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Insight into tube-building behaviour and palaeoecology of some agglutinating worms from the Upper Devonian of Nevada, USA

Zaton, Michal; Zatoń, Michał; Bond, David P. G.

Authors

Michal Zaton

Michał Zatoń

Abstract

Agglutinated worm tubes from the Upper Devonian of the Devils Gate section in Nevada, USA are reported for the first time, filling a major gap in their Palaeozoic fossil record. Two small (5 mm and 6.7 mm in length) tubes are composed entirely of tentaculitid shells, and one large tube (55 mm in length) is formed from particles including ostracode carapaces, echinoderm ossicles, tentaculitid shells and putative bryozoan fragments aligned perpendicularly to the tube’s long axis. The tubes, in particular the large one have a cylindrical, curved and tapering tube morphology that is very similar to that of modern agglutinating polychaetes of the families Terebellidae and Pectinariidae. The large tube is dominated by objects that fall within a certain size-range, and although built from different types of particles, echinoderm ossicles are prevalent in the posterior part, whereas ostracode carapaces dominate in the middle and anterior parts of the tube. Tentaculitid shells are relatively rare in the large tube, despite being abundant in the surrounding host deposit. The faunal assemblage composing the tube suggests that the worm animal was rather specific in its selection of particles with a certain morphology. This is common behaviour amongst many modern agglutinating terebellid and pectinariid polychaetes. The preservation of such fragile tubes was enhanced by rapid burial, likely caused by gravity flow of sediment in a deep-slope setting.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Mar 1, 2016
Journal Palaeogeography, palaeoclimatology, palaeoecology
Print ISSN 0031-0182
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 445
Pages 138-146
Institution Citation Zatoń, M., & Bond, D. P. G. (2016). Insight into tube-building behaviour and palaeoecology of some agglutinating worms from the Upper Devonian of Nevada, USA. Palaeogeography, palaeoclimatology, palaeoecology, 445, 138-146. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.palaeo.2015.12.020
DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.palaeo.2015.12.020
Keywords Polychaetes; Worm tubes; Particle selection; Taphonomy; Frasnian
Publisher URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0031018215007464
Additional Information Authors' accepted manuscript of article published in: Palaeogeography, palaeoclimatology, palaeoecology, 2016, v.445.

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Copyright Statement
© 2017. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/




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