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Publications

Inferring octopodoid and gastropod behavior from their Plio-Pleistocene cowrie prey (Gastropoda: Cypraeidae)

Predation is an evolutionary force shaping sea floor communities, with the record of drilling predation being particularly useful to study predatory behavior on short and long timescales. Most predatory drill holes are caused by gastropods, but octopods within Octopodoidea also produce characteristic drill holes, yet remain severely understudied in deep time. Consequently, studies comparing octopodoid

Octopodoidea as predators near the end of the Mesozoic Marine Revolution

Octopodoidea are a highly versatile and diverse group of marine predators comprising > 200 species today, but their diversity and ecology in deep time are virtually unknown. Because these soft-bodied cephalopods have a low preservation potential, only a single body fossil species has been documented. Unlike other modern cephalopods, octopodoids leave behind a characteristic drill

Systematics and convergent evolution of multiple reef-associated Jurassic and Cretaceous crabs (Decapoda, Brachyura)

We studied multiple true crabs (Brachyura) from primarily sponge and coral reefs that lived during the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods (201 to 66 million years ago). Both environments were important habitats for the evolution and biodiversity of crabs during the Late Jurassic epoch (164 to 145 million years ago).

Feeding Traces on a Pteranodon (Reptilia: Pterosauria) Bone from the Late Cretaceous (Campanian) Mooreville Chalk in Alabama, USA

Pterosaur remains are exceptionally rare in the Late Cretaceous marine chalks of Alabama and the few specimens found are typically very fragmentary. We report the occurrence of a metacarpal of Pteranodon cf. longiceps from the Mooreville Chalk (Campanian, 83 million years old) of Dallas County, Alabama.

Development of polymorphic microsatellite markers for a rare dragonfly, Cordulegaster sarracenia (Odonata: Cordulegastridae), with notes on population structure and genetic diversity

Kendra K. Abbott, John C. Abbott, Jeffrey D. Lozier, Rochelle R Beasley & Stacey L. Lance (2018) Development of polymorphic microsatellite markers for a rare dragonfly, Cordulegaster sarracenia (Odonata: Cordulegastridae), with notes on population structure and genetic diversity, International Journal of Odonatology, DOI: 10.1080/13887890.2018.1498398 We isolated and characterized a total of 13 microsatellite loci from Cordulegaster

Complete Ichthyornis skull illuminates mosaic assembly of the avian head

D.J. Field, M. Hanson, D. Burnham, L.E. Wilson, K. Super, D. Ehret, J. Ebersole & B.-A.S. Bhullar, published in Nature, volume 357, 3May2018. The skull of living birds is greatly modified from the condition found in their dinosaurian antecedents. Bird skulls have an enlarged, toothless premaxillary beak and an intricate kinetic system that includes a

A new species of Peritresius Leidy, 1856 (Testudines: Pan-Cheloniidae) from the Late Cretaceous (Campanian) of Alabama, USA, and the occurrence of the genus within the Mississippi Embayment of North America

A.D. Gentry, J.F. Parham, D.J. Ehret & J.A. Ebersole, published in PLOS ONE 13(4): e0195651 Late Cretaceous members of Peritresius belong to a diverse clade of marine adapted turtles currently thought to be some of the earliest representatives of the lineage leading to modern hard-shelled sea turtles (Pan-Cheloniidae). Prior studies have suggested that Peritresius was

A new cochliodont anterior tooth plate from the Mississippian of Alabama (USA) having implications for the origin of tooth plates from tooth files

W. Itano & L.L. Lambert, published in Zoological Letters 4(12) Paleozoic holocephalian tooth plates are rarely found articulated in their original positions. When they are found isolated, it is difficult to associate the small, anterior tooth plates with the larger, more posterior ones. Tooth plates are presumed to have evolved from fusion of tooth files.