Paleontology and Evolutionary Science

Editors' Picks

Feroxichthys panzhouensis sp. nov., a hump-backed colobodontid (Neopterygii, Actinopterygii) from the early Middle Triassic of Panzhou, Guizhou, China
Diogo Provete –– This manuscript describes the second species of a new genus of fossil fish
Divergent morphological responses to millennia of climate change in two species of bats from Hall’s Cave, Texas, USA
Brandon Hedrick –– The authors examine mandibular shape in two species of bats with robust 25,000 year old fossil records. Combining these data with climate and environmental data, they assess correlations between environment and mandible shape and size. These results are part of the growing field of conservation paleobiology and are useful in interpreting how changing climate impacts morphological evolution.
Ontogeny of highly variable ceratitid ammonoids from the Anisian (Middle Triassic)
Brandon Hedrick –– The authors examine ontogenetic changes in a group of Triassic ammonoids using geometric morphometrics to assess potential taxonomic diversity and over-splitting. These results are relevant beyond the locality that the authors focus on and have bearing on ammonoid paleontology more generally.
Offshore marine actinopterygian assemblages from the Maastrichtian–Paleogene of the Pindos Unit in Eurytania, Greece
Kenneth De Baets –– The article describe new data from an important locality straddling the K-Pg event which is crucial for our understanding of this event on extinction patterns of teleost fishes.
The diverse radiodont fauna from the Marjum Formation of Utah, USA (Cambrian: Drumian)
Joseph Gillespie –– An important contribution to the knowledge base on Cambrian radiodont arthropods, with significant information regarding biotic diversity from the Marjum Formation of Utah, USA.
The ecomorphology of the shell of extant turtles and its applications for fossil turtles
Brandon Hedrick –– The authors present a study on turtle shell morphology using 3D geometric morphometrics to investigate the relationship between shell morphology and ecology.
Canines and carnassials as indicators of sociality in durophagous hyaenids: analyzing the past to understand the present
Brandon Hedrick –– The authors provide a large and useful dataset for analyzing the evolution of canine shape in fossil and extant hyaenid taxa. A new hypothesis regarding hyaenid tooth functional morphology is proposed with reference to social behavior.
The phylogeny and systematics of Xiphosura
Peter Wilf –– Fossil horseshoe crabs have enduring interest because they supposedly demonstrate extraordinary evolutionary stasis in the group "as living fossils." Evaluating this idea requires a great deal of careful comparative systematics, and this paper makes significant advances in the area by carefully defining a large suite of important fossils phylogenetically and systematically. It is a valuable paleontological contribution to a famous problem in invertebrate evolution.
The cranial morphology of Tanystropheus hydroides (Tanystropheidae, Archosauromorpha) as revealed by synchrotron microtomography
Mark Young –– An excellent osteological description of an unusual Triassic reptile, using CT data to investigate the endocranial anatomy.
Effects of taphonomic deformation on geometric morphometric analysis of fossils: a study using the dicynodont Diictodon feliceps (Therapsida, Anomodontia)
Mark Young –– An interesting study quantifying shape change, and the impact of taphonomy.
Paleontology and Evolutionary Science

Section discussions

Just published in @PeerJLife - A #NewSpecies and new fossil mantis #shrimp and the convergent evolution of a lobster-like morphotype Research from Haug and Haug @LMU_Muenchen Read the full article #EvolutionaryStudies #Paleontology

Idade e crescimento de Palaeoloxodon huaihoensis do Canal de Penghu, Taiwan: significado de sua distribuição etária com base em fósseis

Rodriguez et al. investigate the respiratory #organs of P. canaliculata by studying the lung of this species at the anatomical histological and ultrastructural levels @UNCUYO @ruhrunibochum Read the full @PeerJLife article #Aquaculture #Evolution

A #NewSpecies Meiogyne oligocarpa (#Annonaceae), named from Yunnan, China published in @PeerJLife #Biodiversity #MolecularBiology #PlantScience #Taxonomy

Lesões e interferência de muda em um trilobita do Cambriano (Furongiano) do Sul da China #trilobita #trilobite

A #NewSpecies of hump-backed #colobodontid from the early Middle Triassic of #Panzhou China is named in @PeerJLife article #Aquaculture #Fisheries #FishScience #Evolution #Paleontology

Important perspective piece by @Tseng_ZJ in @thePeerJ : comparative FEA studies with low sample size (<11) can lead to false positives (for biomechanical performance - feeding ecology correlations in mammalian skulls, but probably more broadly!).

Extensive microbial diversity within the chicken gut microbiome revealed by metagenomics and culture [PeerJ]