Thursday, March 5, 2015

Jim Jenks gets the 2014 Katherine Palmer Award

My Friend and colleague Jim Jenks received PRI's 2014 Katherine Palmer Award.

It is a pleasure working with Jim and I congratulate him on getting this well deserved award.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Two new papers on the Early Triassic rocks in Utah

Evolution of depositional settings in the Torrey area during the Smithian (Early Triassic, Utah, USA) and their significance for the biotic recovery; Olivier, N., Brayard, A., Vennin, E., Escarguel, G., Fara, E., Bylund, K.G., Jenks, J.F., Caravaca G. and Stephen, D.A.; 2015, Geological Journal


Microbial deposits in the aftermath of the end-Permian mass extinction: A diverging case from the Mineral Mountains (Utah, USA)
Vennin, E., Olivier, N., Brayard, A., Bour, I., Thomazo, C., Escarguel, G., Fara, E., Bylund, K.G., Jenks, J.F., Stephen, D.A. and Hofmann, R.; 2015, Sedimentology

The Sinbad Formation as exposed just west of Capitol Reef National Park (just East of Torrey)
View of the Early Triassic rocks exposed just East of Minersville

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Types on loan from USNM to NHMU

After a request to the US National Museum, they sent the first of three loans of Type Specimens to the Natural History Museum of Utah.  Types are the specimens used to compare to other specimens to verify the others are typical of the type.  Syntypes are usually from a series of types where neither a Holotype or Lectotype have been designated.
Syntype of Wyomingites aplanatus (White 1879)


Holotypes are single specimens showing what all other specimens of that species should look like.

Holotype for Danubites strongi  Hyatt & Smith 1905

Paperwork in the box

Jim and I will be examining these types over the next few weeks or months as they come in.  There is a lot of revising and/or synonymizing to do.  What was thought to be typical may actually be atypical of the type.

Holotype of Xenoceltites cordilleranus (Smith 1932)


Thanks to Dan Levin at the Smithsonian Institute, and Randy Irmis and Carrie Levitt-Bussian at the NHMU for helping and facilitating the loan from the USNM, we really appreciate their help and hospitality.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Recovery of benthic marine communities from the end‐Permian mass extinction at the low latitudes of eastern Panthalassa

Richard Hofmann, Michael Hautmann, Arnaud Brayard, Alexander N├╝tzel, Kevin G Bylund, James F Jenks, Emmanuelle Vennin, Nicolas Olivier, Hugo Bucher

Fossils from the Early Spathian "Eumorphotis Bioevent".  These were found in the Confusion Range.

More of our work on the Early Triassic of Utah and other Western States.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Smithian shoreline migrations and depositional settings in Timpoweap Canyon (Early Triassic, Utah, USA)


Geological Magazine FirstView Articles

Triassic Rock Canyon Conglomerate and Sinbad Formations
(formerly Timpoweap) in Timpoweap Canyon
More from our work in the Triassic of Utah.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Early Triassic Moenkopi/Thaynes - Ammonoid Biostratigraphy, Correlation and Paleogeography

Smithian ammonoid faunas from Utah: implications for Early Triassic biostratigraphy, correlation and basinal paleogeography

Arnaud Brayard, Kevin G. Bylund, James F. Jenks, Daniel A. Stephen, Nicolas Olivier, Gilles Escarguel, Emmanuel Fara, Emmanuelle Vennin, Swiss Journal of Palaeontology, 2013, 132:141-219


Intensive sampling of the lower portion of the Thaynes and Moenkopi Groups (Lower Triassic) at separate localities within the Confusion Range, Pahvant Range, Mineral Mountains, Star Range, Kanarraville, Cedar City, Torrey and San Rafael Swell areas (mainly central and southern Utah, USA) leads to the recognition of a new key regional Smithian ammonoid succession. The new biostratigraphical sequence, which is more precise than the long-recognized Meekoceras gracilitatis and Anasibirites kingianus Zones, comprises twelve subdivisions, thus resulting in a sequence with much higher resolution that can be correlated not only with other western USA sites, but also with major worldwide localities as well. Middle and late Smithian faunas contain many taxa with wide geographic distribution, thus enabling long-distance correlation with faunal successions from other regions (e.g., British Columbia, Canadian Arctic, South China, Spiti and Oman). New assemblages from the lowermost beds are the least diversified and poorest preserved; they represent the earliest early/middle Smithian ammonoid faunas reported from the western North American basin. They highlight (a) the sudden Smithian advancement of the marine transgression within this epicontinental sea, (b) that this event is diachronous, and (c) that the paleotopography of the basin most likely was highly irregular. The newly obtained ammonoid succession also allows us to date and follow the transgression from the northern and central part of the basin to the southwesternmost and southeasternmost parts, which were reached during the late Smithian (Anasibirites kingianus beds). In addition, we briefly discuss the now-limited previous regional biozonation in the light of these new results. One new genus (Minersvillites) and nine new species (Kashmirites utahensis, Kashmirites confusionensis, Kashmirites stepheni, ?Xiaoqiaoceras americanum, Minersvillites farai, Inyoites beaverensis, Meekoceras olivieri, Meekoceras millardense, Vercherites undulatus) are also described.

The ammonoids are mostly all the old Early Triassic ones described by C.A.White from collections made by the early geologic surveys of the american west, and by J.P.Smith in the early part of the last century.  A more precise and revised biostratigraphy is proposed.  Below is one of the newly described ammonoids, this one from the Minersville area, one of the earliest Smithian ammonoids found in the western USA.
Vercherites undulatus Brayard Bylund and Jenks 2013
The rocks we have been working in represent the Permian and Early Triassic transition beds, usually some Permian limestones followed by an erosive surface, conglomerate, then a transgressive sequence with marginal marine redbeds, inner shelf, outer shelf and basinal deposits following.
Moenkopi and Thaynes Groups as exposed near Minersville

Permian rocks at the bottom, then the red Black Dragon Formation, and capped with the Sinbad Formation.  As exposed just west of Capitol Reef National Park.
     As you can see, some very wonderful country to explore and work in.  More papers are in the works covering the paleontology and geology of these rocks, I'm really looking forward to the adventure.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Shovel Control

Just like Gun Control, only in this case a shovel is the culprit.

Instead of prosecuting those shovel carriers that abuse the system, the government, in it's infinite wisdom, will ban all shovels carried by common fossil hunters on Federal Land.

Please read and comment on these new regulations, I think they are bad for the Public and Science.

Paleontological Resources Preservation