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A Griesbachian (Early Triassic) mollusc fauna from the Sidazhai section, Southwest China, with palaeoecological insights on the proliferation of genus Claraia (Bivalvia)

Yunfei Huanga,*, Jinnan Tongb, Margaret L. Fraiserc
a School of Geoscience, Yangtze University, Wuhan, 430100, China;bState Key Laboratory of Biogeology and Environmental Geology, China University of Geosciences, Wuhan, 430074, China;cDepartment of Geosciences, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Milwaukee, 53211, USA

Abstract: After the end-Permian mass extinction, genus Claraia (Bivalvia) was the most abundant and most noticeable fossil during the survival and recovery stage. However, the reasons for the proliferation of Claraia are still debated. This paper describes a new Griesbachian (Early Triassic) mollusc fauna from deep-water settings in South China in the aftermath of end-Permian mass extinction. This fauna yielded five bivalve species in two genera (Claraia griesbachi, C. wangi, C. stachei, C. radialis, and Promyalina putiatinensis) and two ammonoid species (Ophiceras sp. and Ussuridiscus sp.) and could be assigned to the Claraia wangiC. griesbachi assemblage zone, indicating a middle-late Griesbachian age. The bivalves were dominated by Claraia griesbachi and were featured by articulated Claraia fossils. As Claraia was epibyssate, it was an excellent autochthonous fauna. While the shallow and deep marine water became dysoxic to anoxic globally, as indicated by recent studies of the early Early Triassic, we suggest the genus Claraia could tolerate dysoxic and/or anoxic conditions and its proliferation could be attributed to its physiological features which were adapted to the stressed environment. The wide distribution of Claraia was probably related to its planktonic larval stage. Where the larva of Claraia could have been transported by ocean flow and increased its potential for long-distance dispersal. In addition, Claraia was a significant disaster and opportunistic taxon during the Early Triassic based on observations in South China.


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Keywords:bivalves, Claraia, disaster species, palaeocology, Early Triassic.

DOI:
10.1007/s12583-017-0966-7
CLC number:
U469.72
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