late cretaceous

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The first representatives of the genus Cameroptychium Leonhard, 1897 (Porifera, Hexactinellida) from the Upper Cretaceous of the Volga region

The first representatives of Cameroptychium on the territory of Russia, which are established in the rocks of the Upper Cretaceous of the Volga region, are described. The labyrinthine structure of the skeleton and the modular, colonial level of organization of these sponges are considered, which is typical for many Late Cretaceous Hexactinellids. The widespread manifestation of isomorphism indicates the finiteness of the formation of representatives of Hexactinellida. The origin of Cameroptychium is correlated with Santonian Plocoscyphia.

Representatives of the genus Botryosella Schrammen, 1912 (Porifera, Hexactinellida) from the Upper Cretaceous of the Volga region

Among the numerous and diversiform Late Cretaceous siliceous sponges collected throughout the Volga region, several representatives of the genus Botryosella have been encountered, previously unknown for the area. Analysis of the skeleton morphology, peculiar for massive transverse outgrowths, confirms manifestations of isomorphism in Hexactinellids and the opinion of inaccuracies available in the descriptive terminology applied to the skeletal morphology of this Porifera group.

Colonial Leptophragmidae (Porifera, Hexactinellida) from the Lower Santonian of the Volga region

Study of the skeletal morphology of a new representative of the Leptophragmidae family, with no suboscula in its structure, provides support for the earlier specified regularities in generation of Hexactinellida modular forms. Good preservation state of a major colony has made it possible to specify the aspects of paleoecology and taphonomy in the later representatives of the Middle Coniacian – Early Santonian succession of siliceous sponges.

Contubernium Ochevi (Porifera, Hexactinellida)

Among the Late Cretaceous Ventriculitidae, with the most simply constructed pariform skeleton, representatives characterized by unusual neoplasms were identified. On the paragastric surface after the lapel of these sponges (Contubernium), cone-shaped submodules are regularly based, the appearance of which is associated with incomplete blastogenesis. Paragastra of submodules are not associated with the atrium, therefore, Contubernium is considered as a perifrontal organism, occupying an intermediate position between single and modular forms of spongia.

Composition and Structure of the Ventriculitidae (Porifera, Hexactinellida) Family

The Ventriculitidae representatives used to hold noticeable and occasionally dominant position within the Coniacian – Maastrichtian sponge assemblages. Relatively simple skeleton construction in the representatives of the family among the Late Cretaceous hexactinellids has made it possible to trace variations in skeleton morphology, changes in the goblet habitus and in the structure of irrigation system depending on the width variations of the skeleton-building wall.

Experience of Cyclostratigraphic Analysis of Petromagnetic Data on the Turonian–Maastrihtian Section «Nizhnyaya Bannovka» (Volga River Right Bank, Southern Saratov Region)

On the base of spectral Fourier analysis of magnetic susceptibility time series of nearly 10 000 measurements of rock samples in the turonian-maastrihtian sediments, exposed near Nizhnyaya Bannovka village (Volga River Right Bank, Southern Saratov Region) there were detected long and short eccentricity cycles. Petromagnetic variations, correlated with different variants of eustatic curves detected the presence of well known sequences. The study includes the calculations of sedimentation rates, localization of sedimentation breaks and estimation of their duration.

Morphotypes of the Late Cretaceous Hexactinellids (Porifera, Hexactinellida)

Basic structure types have been specified in hexacinellids with soldered spicule lattice. The fossils of those occur as skeletal forms. Certain tendencies in Lychniscosa and Hexactinosa morphogenesis were identified as conductive to shaping the spectrum of skeleton archetypes. The increase of sponge morphological diversity was in many ways predetermined by thickness reduction of the skeleton-forming walls, associated with reduction of the irrigation system elements. That has brought about forms of complicated tubular labyrinth habits.

Morphogeneses of the Late Cretaceous Guettardiscyphia (Porifera, Hexactinellida)

Guettardiscyphia skeletons are peculiar for thin walls and highly dense apo- and prosopores. Wall mobility was conductive to formation of conical lobate skeletons of various, occasionally geometrically regular outlines. Substantial number of fossil samples from variously composed rocks from all the Upper Cretaceous intervals has made it possible to trace skeleton transformations in sponge ontogenesis and depending on their environmental conditions.

Regenerative Capabilities in the Late Cretaceous Hexactinellids (Porifera, Hexactinellida)

Partial and complete regeneration phenomena, cases of skeleton habitus restoration have been recorded in representatives of the Late Cretaceous hexactinnelids. Regeneration incidences are in many ways associated with the ability of silicon-producing cells responsible for constructing skeleton-generating elements, spicules, to transform, to rearrange their functions in response to the changes of the organism position on the substrate surface and/or upon the changes of the aquatic environment parameters.

Colonial Level of Modular Organization in the Late Cretaceous Hexactinellids (Porifera). Genuine Colonies

Tendencies of morphogenesis in the Late Cretaceous modular forms contributed to formations of complexly structured secondary (genuine) colonies. Skeletons of genuine colonial sponges differ not just in numerous and diversely arranged equivalent oscula-carrying modules, but in the presence of the module connecting elements – junctions, as well. Characteristic elements of genuine colony skeletons – ostia – have been recognized between the modules and the junctions.