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Article Reference A forest fire and soil erosion event during the Late Devonian mass extinction.
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications
Article Reference A fossil albatross from the early Oligocene of the North Sea Basin
We describe a stem group representative of Diomedeidae from the early Oligocene (Rupelian) of Belgium. The fossil remains, wing, and pectoral girdle bones of two individuals are described as Tydea septentrionalis, gen. et sp. nov., and constitute the earliest well-established record of the taxon and the first Paleogene record from the North Sea Basin. The new species was about the size of the extant Black-browed Albatross (Thalassarche melanophris) and establishes that albatrosses had already reached a large size 30 mya. The wing bones of T. septentrionalis are distinguished by several plesiomorphic features from those of species in crown group Diomedeidae, which may indicate differences in aerodynamic performance between the fossil species and extant albatrosses. We detail that a previously described early Miocene species, “Plotornis” arvernensis, should be expunged from the fossil record of albatrosses. However, the new fossils provide further evidence that the extant, mainly Southern Hemispheric, distribution of albatrosses is relictual compared with the past distribution of the total group (stem group + crown group). With unambiguous records from the early Oligocene, early Miocene, and Pliocene, albatrosses are now known to have had a long evolutionary history in the European part of the North Atlantic, but the reasons for their extinction remain poorly understood
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications
Article Reference A fossil heron from the early Oligocene of Belgium : the earliest temporary well-constrained record of the Ardeidae
We describe the earliest temporally well-constrained fossil that can be assigned to the Ardeidae (herons), from the lowermost Oligocene (32.0–33.0 million years ago) of Belgium. The specimen, a partial tarsometatarsus, belongs to a small species and is described as Proardea? deschutteri n. sp. It exhibits the characteristic tarsometatarsus morphology found in extant heron species, but a confident assignment to one of the ardeid subclades is not possible and even the assignment of the new fossil species to the crown group (the clade including the extant species) cannot be established. The fossil indicates a divergence of herons from their sister taxon by at least the earliest Oligocene, and current paleontological data suggest that herons arrived in Europe shortly after a major faunal turnover at the Eocene/Oligocene boundary. We consider that dispersal is the likely reason for the sudden appearance of herons in the earliest Oligocene of Europe but it is uncertain from where exactly this took place, with Asia and Africa being among the candidate areas.
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2018
Article Reference A highly diverse micrososm in a hostile world: a review on the associates of red wood ants (Formica rufa group)
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications
Article Reference A land micro-mammal fauna from the Early Eocene marine Egem deposits (NP12, Belgium) and the first occurrence of the peradectid marsupial Armintodelphys outside North America
Dental remains of land mammals are sometimes discovered in shallow marine Paleogene deposits of the North Sea Basin. Such is the case for eleven specimens we describe here from the Early Eocene Egemkapel Clay Member in the middle part of the Tielt Formation, found in Ampe quarry at Egem in Northwestern Belgium. The small fauna consists of 6 taxa, including the neoplagiaulacid multituberculate Ectypodus, the erinaceomorph insectivore Macrocranion, the nyctitheriid Leptacodon, an eochiropteran bat possibly belonging to a palaeochiropterygid, an unidentified perissodactyl possibly belonging to an equoid, and a new species of the peradectid marsupial Armintodelphys. The latter represents the first European occurrence of the genus, which was previously only known from the North American late Early and early Middle Eocene of the Wind River and Green River basins in Wyoming and the Uinta Basin in Utah. Biogeographic and biostratigraphic analyses of peradectid marsupials suggest that Armintodelphys dispersed between North America and Europe around the time of the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum. The Egemkapel Clay Member has been dated as middle NP12, early late Ypresian, whereas the Egem mammal fauna can be correlated to the fauna of Avenay from the Paris Basin, which is the international reference-level MP8+9 of the mammalian biochronological scale for the European Paleogene.
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications
Article Reference A late surviving Pliocene seal from high latitudes of the North Atlantic realm: the latest monachine seal on the southern margin of the North Sea
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2018
Article Reference A mitochondrial phylogeographic scenario for the most widespread African rodent species , Mastomys natalensis
In order to evaluate the contribution of geological, environmental, and climatic changes to the spatial distri- bution of genetic variation of Mastomys natalensis, we analysed cytochrome b sequences from the whole dis- tribution area of the species to infer its phylogeographic structure and historical demography. Six well-supported phylogroups, differentiated during the Pleistocene, were evidenced. No significant correlation between genetic and geographic distances was found at the continental scale, and the geographic distributions of the observed phylogroups have resulted from extensive periods of isolation caused by the presence of putative geographic and ecological barriers. The diversification events were probably influenced by habitat contraction/expansion cycles that may have complemented topographic barriers to induce genetic drift and lineage sorting. According to our results, we propose a scenario where climate-driven processes may have played a primary role in the differ- entiation among phylogroups.
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications
Article Reference A monodontid cetacean from the Early Pliocene of the North Sea
Located in RBINS Publications / Bulletin of the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences - Earth Sciences. / Bulletin of the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences - Earth Sciences
Article Reference A Monographic Revision of the Genux gemnetis MacLeay, 1819 (Coleoptera, Scarabaeidae: Cetoniinae)
Located in Library / RBINS collections by external author(s)
Article Reference A multi-proxy record of the Latest Danian Event at Gebel Qreiya, Eastern Desert, Egypt.
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications