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Silurian amplexoid rugose coral genera Pilophyllia Ge and Yu, 1974 and Neopilophyllia new genus from South China

  • Guang-Xu Wang (a1), Xin-Yi He (a2), Lan Tang (a3) and Ian G. Percival (a4)

Pilophyllia Ge and Yu, 1974 represents a major group of distinctive amplexoid corals in the Silurian, whose taxonomic relationships, species composition, and evolutionary trends remain contentious. A critical revision of type material and new specimens of several species (and subspecies) assigned to Pilophyllia, including the type species P. involuta Ge and Yu, 1974, provides solutions to some of these problems. Pilophyllia is revised to include only those forms characterized by a distinct peripheral stereozone and amplexoid major septa with club-shaped rhabdacanths set in thick lamellar stereomes. Other species, previously referred to Pilophyllia but having generally short septa with wedge-shaped rhabdacanths, are transferred herein to the new genus Neopilophyllia Wang. Both genera, together with other Silurian amplexoid rugosan genera such as Amplexoides, are referred to the new family Amplexoididae Wang, which is thought to be evolutionarily unrelated to the much younger (Devonian to early Carboniferous) amplexoid rugosan family Amplexidae Chapman, 1893. The first appearance of Neopilophyllia n. gen. in the middle Telychian, much later than that of Pilophyllia in the late Rhuddanian, probably marks a significant stage during the evolution of Silurian amplexoid corals.


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Journal of Paleontology
  • ISSN: 0022-3360
  • EISSN: 1937-2337
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