Middle Devonian Bivalvia from the Solsville Member (Marcellus Formation), central New York State. Bulletin of the AMNH ; v. 174, article 3

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[New York] : American Museum of Natural History
"A remarkably well-preserved molluscan fauna in the Solsville Member (Marcellus Formation) of the Chenango Valley, New York, provides a rare opportunity to explore the functional morphology, paleoecology, and systematic relationships of several poorly understood Devonian bivalve taxa. Over 350 recrystallized shells and internal molds from several localities in Madison County, New York, were collected and prepared for this study. The majority of these provide valuable new data on hinge, ligament, adductor and byssal/pedal musculature, and pallial morphology. Ten genera and 14 species are represented. Only one new taxon is recognized, Nuculoidea deceptriformis, new species. Study affirms the contention of Williams (1886) and McAlester (1962a) that large numbers of specific and generic names applied to Devonian bivalves are biologically meaningless owing to taxonomic oversplitting by early authors. The nomenclatural chaos inherited from them evidently stems from (1) lack of adequate morphological data, especially on the hinge and internal features; (2) definitions too narrowly based, i.e., often on as few as one or two specimens; (3) broad variation introduced by preservational differences or different postdepositional histories; (4) the failure of early authors to stress genetic, ecophenotypic and ontogenetic shell variations; (5) parochialism among past authors resulting in few transatlantic comparisons of European and American species. With these observations in mind, the erection of new names has been largely avoided. Generic usages have been reviewed and, in most instances, revised. Roughly 150 evaluations and comparisons of other North American and European species have been incorporated using the improved morphologic data supplied by the Solsville collection as a basis for comparison. About 160 possible synonyms have been suggested; 73 of these are new. In several instances more familiar North American names are superseded by earlier European ones. Paloecologic reconstruction of the Solsville suggests two distinctive nearshore marine deltaic bivalve communities: (1) the Gosseletia community dominated by epifaunal and semi-infaunal byssate filter feeders associated with arenaceous sediments, and (2) the Nuculoidea community characterized by abundant deposit feeders in more argillaceous substrates. An autecological interpretation of each taxon is provided. Biogeographic comparisons with several other Devonian faunas in North America and Europe are investigated. Evidence suggests that (1) the Appalachian and Midwestern North American taxa of the Middle Devonian are closely allied with the Lower to Middle Devonian of central Europe; (2) the Michigan Basin fauna contains numerous North American endemics; and (3) Western North American taxa have fewer relations to Appalachian taxa than earlier authors have supposed"--P. 196.
p. 196-325 : ill., map ; 26 cm.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 312-325).