Notes on the evolution of the ammonite families Aulacostephanidae and Cardioceratidae and the stratigraphy of the uppermost Oxfordian and lowermost Kimmeridgian in the Staffin Bay sections (Isle of Skye, Northern Scotland)

Andrzej WIERZBOWSKI, Bronisław A. MATYJA, John K. WRIGHT


Detailed study of all the ammonite collections gathered by the authors in the Staffin Bay sections has resulted in minor changes in the distribution of ammonite taxa, and slight modification of the position of the Oxfordian/Kimmeridgian boundary. Most significant is the discovery of Pictonia (Triozites) cf. seminudata which results in the placing of the stage boundary 0.16 m below the level formerly proposed. This study discusses the evolution of the Subboreal family Aulacostephanidae, and the Boreal family Cardioceratidae, indicating changes in the patterns of individual development in the evolution of both families in terms of heterochrony. The Oxfordian/ Kimmeridgian boundary interval shows major morphological changes in both ammonite families which were released from phylogenetic constraints by heterochrony, closely related to changes in environmental conditions.


stratigraphy; ammonites; Oxfordian/Kimmeridgian boundary; evolution; heterochrony

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