1981 in paleontology

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Paleontology, palaeontology or palæontology (from Greek: paleo, "ancient"; ontos, "being"; and logos, "knowledge") is the study of prehistoric life forms on Earth through the examination of plant and animal fossils.[1] This includes the study of body fossils, tracks (ichnites), burrows, cast-off parts, fossilised feces (coprolites), palynomorphs and chemical residues. Because mankind has encountered fossils for millennia, paleontology has a long history both before and after becoming formalized as a science. This article records significant discoveries and events related to paleontology that occurred or were published in the year 1981.

Arthropoda[edit]

newly named insects[edit]

Name Novelty Status Authors Age Unit Location Notes Images

Polanskiella[2]

Gen et sp nov

jr synonym

Rossi de Garcia

Middle Eocene

Ventana Formation

 Argentina

Extinct Myrmeciin ant genus,
jr synonym of type species Archimyrmex, sole species A. smekali

Archosauromorpha[edit]

Newly named dinosaurs[edit]

Data courtesy of George Olshevsky's dinosaur genera list[3] and Dr. Jeremy Montague's dinosaur genus database.[4]

Name Status Authors Notes Images
Avimimus[5] Valid taxon
Barsboldia[6] Valid taxon
Elmisaurus[7] Valid taxon
Garudimimus[8] Valid taxon
"Honghesaurus" Nomen nudum

Later renamed Yandusaurus.

"Ingenia"[8]

Preoccupied.

Name preoccupied by a nematode Gerlach 1957. Renamed Ajancingenia in 2013.

Muttaburrasaurus[9] Valid taxon
  • Bartholomai
Palaeopteryx[10] Valid taxon
Scutellosaurus[11] Valid taxon
  • Colbert

Remarks on newly named birds[edit]

  • Palaeopteryx thomsoni Jensen, 1981. is most probably not a bird but perhaps a small dinosaur, it is best treated as a taxon non avium.
  • Plegadis pharangites Olson, 1981. is a new name for Plegadis gracilis Miller et Bowman, 1956, preoccupied by Plegadis gracilis (Lydekker, 1891), described as Milnea gracilis Lydekker, 1891 and transferred to the genus Plegadis Kaup, 1829 by Cheneval, 1984.

Newly named birds[edit]

Name Status Novelty Authors Age Unit Location Notes Images

Burhinus lucorum [12]

Valid

Sp. nov.

K. Jeffrey Bickart

Early Miocene

Middle Sheep Creek Formation

 USA:

 Nebraska

A Burhinidae.

Enantiornis leali [13]

Valid

Gen. nov. et Sp. nov.

Cyril A. Walker

Late Cretaceous

Maastrichtian

Lecho Formation

 Argentina

An Enantiornithes Walker, 1981, Alexornithiformes Brodkorb, 1976, Enantiornithidae Nessov et Borkin, 1983, this is the type species of the new genus.

Eogrus crudus [14]

Valid

Sp. nov.

Evgeny N. Kurochkin

Middle-Late Eocene

Tsagan Kutel

 Mongolia

A Gruiformes, Eogruidae Wetmore, 1934, this is the type species of the new genus.

Falco medius [15]

Valid

Sp. nov.

A. S. Umanskaya

Late Miocene

MN 11-13

 USSR:

 Ukraine

A Falconidae.

Gavia paradoxa [15]

Valid

Sp. nov.

A. S. Umanskaya

Late Miocene

MN 11-13

 USSR:

 Ukraine

A Gaviidae.

Ioriotis gabunii [16]

Valid

Gen. nov. et Sp. nov.

Nikolay I. Burchak-Abramovich

Abesalom K. Vekua

Late Pliocene

Kvabebi

 USSR:

 Georgia

An Otididae, this is the type species of the new genus.

Mancalla emlongi [17]

Valid

Sp. nov.

Storrs L. Olson

Late Pliocene

Blancan,

San Diego Formation

 USA:

 California

An Alcidae, Mancallinae L. H. Miller, 1946.

Microdytes tonnii [18]

Valid

Gen. nov. et Sp. nov.

George G. Simpson

Late Oligocene-Early Miocene

Patagonian

 Argentina

A Sphniscidae, this is the type species of the new genus. Microdytes Simpson, 1981 is preoccupied by Microdytes Balfour-Browne, 1949 (Coleoptera), so Storrs L. Olson created the new genus Eretiscus Olson, 1986 to accommodate Microdytes tonnii Simpson, 1981. [19]

Pedinorhis stirpsarcana [20]

Valid

Gen. nov. et Sp. nov.

Storrs L. Olson

Mary C. McKitrick

Pleistocene

Cave deposits

 Puerto Rico

A Fringillidae, Emberizinae, this is the type species of the new genus.

Pelecanus cadimurka [21]

Valid

Sp. nov.

Patricia Vickers Rich

Gerard F. Van Tets

Pleistocene

Kuttipirra (Katipiri) Waterhole

 Australia:

 South Australia

A Pelecanidae.

Picus peregrinabundus [22]

Valid

Sp. nov.

A. S. Umanskaja

Late Miocene

MN 11-12

 USSR:

 Ukraine

A Picidae.

Sonogrus gregalis [14]

Valid

Gen. nov. et Sp. nov.

Evgeny N. Kurochkin

Late Eocene-Early Oligocene

Ergilin Dzo Formation

 Mongolia

A Gruiformes, Eogruidae Wetmore, 1934, this is the type species of the new genus.

Uria brodkorbi [23]

Valid

Sp. nov.

Hildegarde Howard

Late Miocene

Sisquoc Formation,

Clarendonian

 USA:

 California

An Alcidae.

Urmiornis orientalis [14]

Valid

Sp. nov.

Evgeny N. Kurochkin

Middle Pliocene

 USSR:

 Kazakhstan

A Gruiformes, Eogruidae Wetmore, 1934, transferred to the genus Amphipelargus Lydekker, 1891 by both Kurochkin, 1985 and Olson, 1985.

Urmiornis ukrainus [14]

Valid

Sp. nov.

Evgeny N. Kurochkin

Late Miocene

Mn 9-10-11

 USSR:

 Moldova;

 Ukraine;

 Russia

A Gruiformes, Eogruidae Wetmore, 1934, transferred to the genus Amphipelargus Lydekker, 1891 by both Kurochkin, 1985 and Olson, 1985.

Youngornis gracilis [24]

Valid

Gen. nov et Sp. nov.

Yeh Hsiangk’uei

Middle Miocene

Shanwang Formation

 China

A Rallidae, this is the type species of the new genus.

Zeltornis ginsburgi [25]

Valid

Gen. nov et Sp. nov.

Jean Chr. Balouet

Early Miocene

Late Burdigalian,

Djebel Zelten

 Libya

An Ardeidae, this is the type species of the new genus.

Plesiosaurs[edit]

  • Carroll, R. C., 1981, Plesiosaur ancestors from the Upper Permian of Madagascar: Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, London B, v. 293, p. 315- 383.
Name Status Authors Notes

Kimmerosaurus

Valid

Brown

Valid

Pterosaurs[edit]

New taxa[edit]

Name Status Authors Notes

Comodactylus

Valid

Galton

Sultanuvaisia

Valid

Nesov

Synapsids[edit]

Non-mammalian[edit]

Name Status Authors Discovery year Age Unit Location Notes Images

'

Valid

'

Valid

References[edit]

  1. ^ Gini-Newman, Garfield; Graham, Elizabeth (2001). Echoes from the past: world history to the 16th century. Toronto: McGraw-Hill Ryerson Ltd. ISBN 9780070887398. OCLC 46769716. 
  2. ^ Dlussky, G.M. (2012). "New Fossil Ants of the Subfamily Myrmeciinae (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) from Germany". Paleontological Journal 46 (3): 288–292. doi:10.1134/s0031030111050054. 
  3. ^ Olshevsky, George. "Dinogeorge's Dinosaur Genera List". Retrieved 2008-08-07. 
  4. ^ Montague, Jeremy. "Dr. Montague's Database". Retrieved 2008-10-29. 
  5. ^ Kurzanov, S.M. 1981. On the unusual theropods from the Upper Cretaceous of Mongolia. Sovm. Sov.-Mong. Paleontol. Eksped. Trudy 15: pp. 39-50.
  6. ^ Maryanska, T. and H. Osmólska. 1981. First lambeosaurine dinosaur from the Nemegt Formation, Upper Cretaceous, Mongolia. Acta Palaeontologica Polonica. 26 (3-4): pp. 243-255.
  7. ^ Osmolska, H. 1981. Coosified tarsometatarsal in theropod dinosaurs and their bearing on the problem of bird origins. Paleontol. Polonica 42: pp. 79-95.
  8. ^ a b Barsbold, R. 1981. The toothless carnivorous dinosaurs of Mongolia. Sovm. Sov.-Mong. Paleontol. Eksped. Trudy 15: pp. 28-39.
  9. ^ Bartholomai, A., and R.E. Molnar. 1981. Muttaburrasaurus, a new iguanodontid (Ornithischia: Ornithopoda) dinosaur from the Lower Cretaceous of Queensland. Mem. Queensland Museum 20: pp. 319-149.
  10. ^ Jensen, J.A. 1981. Another look at Archaeopteryx as the world's oldest bird. Encyclia 58: pp. 109-128.
  11. ^ Colbert, E.H. 1981. A primitive ornithischian dinosaur from the Kayenta Formation of Arizona. Museum Northern Arizona Bull. 53: pp. 1-61.
  12. ^ K. Jeffrey Bickart (1981). "A New Thick-knee, Burhinus, from the Miocene of Nebraska, with Comments on the Habitat Requirements of the Burhinidae (Aves: Charadriiformes)". Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 1 (3-4): 273–277. doi:10.1080/02724634.1981.10011902. 
  13. ^ Cyril A. Walker (1981). "New Subclass of Birds from the Cretaceous of South America". Nature 292 (5818): 51–53. doi:10.1038/292051a0. 
  14. ^ a b c d Evgeny N. Kurochkin (1981). "[New Representatives and Evolution of Two Archaic Gruiform Families in Eurasia]". Sovmestnaja Sovetsko-Mongol’skaja Paleontol. Ekspedit. 15: 59–85. 
  15. ^ a b A. S. Umanskaya (1981). "[Miocene Birds of the Black Sea Coastal Region]". Vestnik Zoologii Nauchnyy Zhurnal Instituta Zoologii Imeni I. I. Shmal'gauzena Akademii Nauk Ukrainskoy SSR II 3 15: 17–21. 
  16. ^ Nikolay I. Burchak-Abramovich & Abesalom K. Vekua (1981). "Fossil Bustard Runner Ioriotis gabunii New Genus New Species of East Georgian SSR USSR Akchagylian". Izvestiya Akademii Nauk Gruzinskoi SSR Seriya Biologicheskaya 7: 53–60. 
  17. ^ Storrs L. Olson (1981). "A Third Species of Mancalla from the Late Pliocene San Diego Formation of California (Aves: Alcidae)". Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 1 (1): 97–99. doi:10.1080/02724634.1981.10011882. 
  18. ^ George G. Simpson (1981). "Notes on Some Fossil Penguins, including a New Genus from Patagonia". Ameghiniana 18 (3-4): 266–272. 
  19. ^ Storrs L. Olson (1986). "A Replacement Name for the Fossil Penguin Microdytes Simpson (Aves: Spheniscidae)". Journal of Paleontology 60: 785. 
  20. ^ Storrs L. Olson & Mary C. McKitrick (1981). "A New Genus and Species of Emberizine Finch from the Pleistocene Cave Deposits in Puerto Rico (Aves: Passeriformes)". Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 1 (3-4): 279–283. doi:10.1080/02724634.1981.10011903. 
  21. ^ Patricia Vickers Rich & Gerard F. Van Tets (1981). "The Fossil Pelecans of Australasia". Records of the South Australian Museum 18: 235–264. 
  22. ^ A. S. Umanskaja (1981). "[Miocene Birds of the Black Sea Coastal Region]". Vestnik Zoologii Nauchnyy Zhurnal Instituta Zoologii Imeni I. I. Shmal'gauzena Akademii Nauk Ukrainskoy SSR II 3: 17–21. 
  23. ^ Hildegarde Howard (1981). "A New Species of Murre, Genus Uria, from the Late Miocene of California". Bulletin of the Southern California Academy of Sciences 80: 1–12. 
  24. ^ Yeh Hsiangk’uei (1981). "[Third Note on Fossil Birds from Linqu, Shandong]". Vertebrata PalAsiatica 19 (2): 149–155. 
  25. ^ Jean Chr. Balouet (1981). "Zeltornis ginsburgi n.g. n.sp. (Ardeidae: Aves), Héron Géant du Miocène Inférieur du Djebel Zelten (Libye)". Comptes Rendus de l’Academie des Sciences Paris series 2 293: 235–239.