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First fossil orthoptera from the Jurassic of North America

  • Dena M. Smith (a1), Mark A. Gorman (a2), Jason D. Pardo (a3) and Bryan J. Small (a4)

A new species of Orthoptera, Parapleurites morrisonensis, is described from the upper Jurassic Morrison Formation of Colorado, USA. This is the first insect described from the Morrison Formation and the first orthopteran described from the Jurassic of North America. No other members of the family Locustopsidae have been described in North America previously, and the other species of Parapleurites are only known from Siberia. The lack of Jurassic Orthoptera in North America is likely due to a combination of taphonomic variables and collector bias. The discovery of Parapleurites morrisonensis and the potential for finding other Jurassic Orthoptera are important to understanding the evolution of this diverse and widely distributed group.

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Journal of Paleontology
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