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Pycnodonts from the Lower Ferron Sandstone Member of the Upper Cretaceous Mancos Shale (Middle Turonian), Emery and Carbon Counties, Utah
Teeth from pycnodonts (ancient reef fishes) occur in harvester ant nests directly below a prominent conglomerate facies within the Upper Cretaceous Lower Ferron Sandstone Member (middle Turonian) of the Mancos Shale in Carbon and Emery Counties, Utah. The comparison of these teeth to those previously documented in whole and partial skulls of pycnodonts indicates that these teeth are representative of all the pycnodont oral and pharyngeal regions which are the following: vomerine, prearticular, dentary, premaxillary, and pharynx. Some of these teeth resemble those belonging to previously reported Cretaceous species in North America including: Palaeobalistum sp. Blainville, 1818, Phacodus punctatus Dixon, 1850, Hadrodus priscus Leidy, 1857, Anomoeodus (Pycnodus) phaseolus (Hay, 1899), Micropycnodon kansasensis (Hibbard and Graffham, 1941), Anomoeodus barberi Hussakof, 1947, and Macropycnodon streckeri (sensu Shimada et al., 2010), and additional species may be present. These findings add to the known geographic distribution and taphonomic settings from which these ancient reef fishes can be recovered and have the potential for helping to clarify pycnodont fossils collected from Cretaceous locations elsewhere in the world.
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