摘要：This paper reviews recent works on the age of Chinese terrestrial Permo-Triassic strata, mainly based on the isotopic dating and the tetrapod correlation. For the application of U-Pb dating methods for the stage-level division of Permo-Triassic strata, the best method is the Thermal Ionization Mass Spectrometer (TIMS), while the Secondary Ion Mass Spectroscopy (SIMS) can be used for many cases; however, the most popular Laser Ablation Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (LA-ICPMS), which has nearly 4% error (>8 Myr), is of little use (Li et al., 2015).
摘要：Here we discribe a new ootypes of prismatoolithids found from the Late Cretaceous Jiangjunding Formation in the Laiyang Basin, Shandong Province. On the basis of characters such as elongate ovoids, smooth eggshell surface, relatively thinner eggshell thickness, prismatic eggshell units, slender pores in radial section of eggshell and little pores with round or irregular shapes in tangeital section of eggshell, we erect one new oogenus and one new oospecies: Laiyangoolithus lixiangensis oogen. et oosp. nov. The discovery of L. lixiangensis not only enriches the diversity and composition of the Laiyang Dinosaur Egg Fauna, but the paleogeographic distribution of primatoolithids as well. In addition, it provides more paleontological materials for the study of the diversity and paleogeographic distribution of troodontids in China.
摘要：Ionoscopiformes, sister to Amiiformes, are an extinct group of halecomorph fishes previously known mainly from the late Middle Triassic (Ladinian) and Late Jurassic of Europe and the Early Cretaceous of the New World. They have not been known in China until recently two ionoscopiforms (Robustichthys and Panxianichthys) were found from the early Middle Triassic (Anisian) of Yunnan and Guizhou, respectively. Here, a new ionoscopiform, Subortichthys triassicus gen. et sp. nov., is described on the basis of six well-preserved specimens from the early Middle Triassic (Pelsonian, Anisian, ~244 Ma) marine deposits exposed in Luoping, eastern Yunnan, China. The discovery documents the second ionoscopiform from the Luoping fossil beds and one of the oldest ionoscopiforms in the world, providing important information for understanding the origin and early diversification of this group. Subortichthys is an unambiguous halecomorph as it possesses two synapomorphies of this clade: a symplectic articulating with the lower jaw and a notched posterior margin of the maxilla. Within the phylogenetic framework of the Halecomorphi, results of the phylogenetic analysis place Subortichthys at the base of the Ionoscopiformes because it bears a sensory canal in the maxilla (an ionoscopiform synapomorphy), but lacks derived features of other ionoscopiforms. Notably, Subortichthys is distinguished from other members of this order with a unique combination of features, such as presence of three or four pairs of extrascapulars and a much expanded third infraorbital posteriorly contacting the preopercle. The new material reveals that the earliest diversification of ionoscopiforms was well undertaken in South China (a part of east Paleotethys Ocean then) by the early Middle Triassic (Anisian).
摘要：New findings of galeaspids (Agnatha) including Altigibbaspis huiqingae gen. et sp. nov., an indeterminate polybranchiaspid, Eugaleaspis changi, and Nanpanaspis microculus are described from the lower part of the Xishancun Formation (early Lochkovian, Early Devonian) near the northeast entrance of Liaokuo Park, Qujing City, Yunnan Province, China. The Polybranchiaspis-like new genus is characterized by a blade-like median dorsal ridge on the dorsal side of head-shield. The morphological disparity of the median dorsal ridge and spine in galeaspids suggests that these structures functioned more than providing a hydrodynamic stability. We assume that a high upright and compressed spine may render galeaspid fishes an apparently larger size as seen by a predator, and a blade-like median dorsal ridge may accomplish a defense against the claws of large sea scorpions. Nanpanaspis is peculiar in bearing two short laterally projecting processes on each side of the head-shield, and its phylogenetic relationship is discussed based on different interpretations on the homology of these processes. Considering the unique morphology of Nanpanaspis, and its early occurrence among the Huananaspiformes, we assign Nanpanaspis in the monogeneric family Nanpanaspidae to represent an early branch of the Huananaspiformes.
摘要：The transformation from a long reptilian tail to a shortened tail ending in a pygostyle and accompanied by aerodynamic fanning rectrices is one of the most remarkable adaptations of early avian evolution. However, no fossils directly capture this transition, and information regarding the structural morphology and the early evolution of the pygostyle in Mesozoic birds and their integuments is relatively limited. Here we provide a review of the pygostyle morphology of Early Cretaceous birds with comparison to the structure in living birds. This study emphasizes the convergent evolution of distally co-ossified caudal vertebrae in non-avian maniraptorans and early birds. There further exist distinct differences in pygostyle morphology between Sapeornithiformes, Confuciusornithiformes, Enantiornithes, and Ornithuromorpha. The morphology of the pygostyle and rectrices in early ornithuromorphs appear similar to that of extant birds, whereas the pygostyle in more primitive birds does not appear morphologically capable of supporting the rectricial bulbs and musculature necessary to control an aerodynamic fan-shaped tail. The rectricial bulbs and rectricial fan appear to have coevolved with the plough-shaped pygostyle early in the evolution of the Ornithuromorpha. This study also shows that the confuciusornithiform pygostyle was more similar to that of enantiornithines than previously recognized, consistent with the presence of nearly identical ornamental tail feathers in both groups.
摘要：A new fossil specimen from the early Middle Eocene of an Irdin Manha Formation equivalent (Erden Obo Section) in Nei Mongol (Inner Mongolia), China appears to be derived from an ameghinornithid-like species, and may represent the first record of the Ameghinornithidae in Asia. This new specimen exhibits the subcircular lateral condyle outline, the absence of an ossified supratendinal bridge, an enlarged flattened tubercle lateral to the extensor sulcus, and other features shared among known ameghinornithid and ameghinornithid-like birds. The Nei Mongol fossil is roughly contemporaneous with the oldest records of the ameghinornithids from Europe (~48 Ma). The absence of this group of birds from North America, and their occurrence in Europe and Asia during the Eocene contrasts with the contemporaneous Nei Mongol mammalian fauna that is comprised largely of Asian taxa with a few distinct linkages to North America. Along with the record of an ameghinornithid-like bird from the early Oligocene deposits of the Fayum area in Egypt, it seems that this extinct bird group had a much larger geographic distribution than previously recognized.
摘要：Sabertooth cats were extinct carnivorans that have attracted great attention and controversy because of their unique dental morphology representing an entirely extinct mode of feeding specialization. Some of them are lion-sized or tiger-sized carnivorans who are widely interpreted as hunters of larger and more powerful preys than those of their modern nonsaber-toothed relatives. We report the discovery of a large sabertooth cat skull of Machairodus horribilis from the Late Miocene of northwestern China. It shares some characteristics with derived sabertooth cats, but also is similar to extant pantherines in some cranial characters. A functional morphological analysis suggests that it differed from most other machairodont felids and had a limited gape to hunt smaller preys. Its anatomical features provide new evidence for the diversity of killing bites even within in the largest saber-toothed carnivorans and offer an additional mechanism for the mosaic evolution leading to functional and morphological diversity in sabertooth cats.
摘要：The Early Cretaceous Jehol dromaeosaurids are taxonomically and morphologically diverse, and one of them, Microraptor zhaoianus, has been suggested to be among the smallest known non-avialan theropods. However, this idea is based on specimens of relatively early ontogenetic stages, and the lower limit of the mature body mass of Jehol dromaeosaurids thus remains unknown. Here we describe a new dromaeosaurid, Zhongjianosaurus yangi gen. et sp. nov., based on a specimen from the Lower Cretaceous Yixian Formation (the middle section of the Jehol Group) from Sihedang, Lingyuan County, Liaoning in Northeast China. While this new taxon is referable to the Microraptorinae, it differs from other microraptorine dromaeosaurids in numerous features, most notably the fusion of proportionally long uncinate processes to dorsal ribs, a humerus with a strongly medially offset proximal end and a large fenestra within the deltopectoral crest, an ulna slightly longer than the humerus, and an arctometatarsalian pes. Most significantly, the estimated 0.31 kg mass of the Z. yangi holotype of an adult individual confirms that some Jehol dromaeosaurids are among the smallest known non-avialan theropods. Our preliminary analysis demonstrates niche differentiation among the Jehol dromaeosaurids, a phenomenon rarely reported among Mesozoic dinosaurian faunas.
摘要：The saurichthyiform fishes were effective predators and hence the significant consumers in the aquatic ecosystems during the Early Mesozoic. They showed a notable diversification in the Anisian (Middle Triassic) Lagerst鋞ten of southwestern China. In this contribution, we report a new species of Saurichthys from the Anisian of Yunnan, China, that displays some peculiar modifications of the axial skeleton and the longate body of the group. This new species, Saurichthys spinosa is a small-sized saurichthyid fish characterized by a very narrow interorbital region of the skull roof, an anteriorly expansive and ventrally arched cleithrum, proportionally large abdominal vertebrae lacking neural spines and alternately bearing laterally-stretching paraneural plates, few fin rays in the median fins, and two paralleling rows of needle-like flank scales with strong thorns. This fish has slimmed down the body by reducing the depth of the head and the epaxial part of the trunk. The elongate paraneural plates inserted in the horizontal septum and the rigid interlocking of the flank scales render the fish a very stiff body, which is compatible with the functional consequence of the obvious decrease of the body (vertebral) segments. This discovery reveals the variability of the axial skeleton and the hydrodynamic properties of the saurichthyiform fishes. These factors, together with the innovations in the locomotion and feeding habit, might have intrinsically effected the evolutionary burst of the eastern Tethyan saurichthyiform fishes during the Anisian, a marked signature of the rapid radiation stage of the biotic recovery after the end-Permian extinction.