Exceptional fossil assemblages confirm the existence of complex Early Triassic ecosystems during the early Spathian - Université Clermont Auvergne Access content directly
Journal Articles Scientific Reports Year : 2021

Exceptional fossil assemblages confirm the existence of complex Early Triassic ecosystems during the early Spathian

Christopher P A Smith
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Emmanuel Fara
Nicolas Olivier
Emmanuelle Vennin
Kevin G Bylund
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James F Jenks
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Arnaud Brayard

Abstract

The mass extinction characterizing the Permian/Triassic boundary (PTB; ~ 252 Ma) corresponds to a major faunal shift between the Palaeozoic and the Modern evolutionary fauna. The temporal, spatial, environmental, and ecological dynamics of the associated biotic recovery remain highly debated, partly due to the scarce, or poorly-known, Early Triassic fossil record. Recently, an exceptionally complex ecosystem dated from immediately after the Smithian/Spathian boundary (~ 3 myr after the PTB) was reported: the Paris Biota (Idaho, USA). However, the spatiotemporal representativeness of this unique assemblage remained questionable as it was hitherto only reported from a single site. Here we describe three new exceptionally diverse assemblages of the same age as the Paris Biota, and a fourth younger one. They are located in Idaho and Nevada, and are taxonomic subsets of the Paris Biota. We show that the latter covered a region-wide area and persisted at least partially throughout the Spathian. The presence of a well-established marine fauna such as the Paris Biota, as soon as the early Spathian, indicates that the post-PTB biotic recovery and the installation of complex ecosystems probably took place earlier than often assumed, at least at a regional scale.
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hal-03370651 , version 1 (08-10-2021)

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Christopher P A Smith, Thomas Laville, Emmanuel Fara, Gilles Escarguel, Nicolas Olivier, et al.. Exceptional fossil assemblages confirm the existence of complex Early Triassic ecosystems during the early Spathian. Scientific Reports, 2021, 11 (1), ⟨10.1038/s41598-021-99056-8⟩. ⟨hal-03370651⟩
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