Aix-en-Provence (Murchison collection) (Oligocene of France)

Where: Bouches-Du-Rhone, France (43.5° N, 5.5° E: paleocoordinates 43.3° N, 2.8° E)

• coordinate estimated from map

• local area-level geographic resolution

When: Niveau du gypse d'Aix Formation, Chattian (28.1 - 23.0 Ma)

• "The ‘insect formation’ is 2.5 m thick, divided in two parts that correspond to two very different environmental conditions. The first (lower) episode is remarkable by its lateral mo- notony of facies on a distance of 6 km at least, in the outcrops observed on the northwest of Aix-en-Provence. This lower episode is distinguished from the rest of the ‘insect formation’ and from the whole formation of Aix-en-Provence by the presence of a very numerous thin limestone laminae. The second (upper) episode is remarkable by the presence of many silici- fied laminae. The fauna in this level is also very well preserved"….This collection consists of unspecified layers

Environment/lithology: lacustrine - large; lithified limestone

• This lacustrine formation was deposited in a very large but shallow-water lake, with variable salinity and near the marine coast (Nury 1990, Nury & Thomassin 1994). Irregular basins formed during extension of the European platform in the Oligocene resulting from the formation of the West-European rift system.
• The deposit presents an alternation of limestone and marls with gypsum.

Size classes: macrofossils, mesofossils

Preservation: mold/impression, adpression

Collected by Murchison

Primary reference: J. Curtis. 1829. Observations upon a collection of fossil insects discovered near Aix in Provence, in the summer of 1828, by R.J. Murchison, Esq. and Charles Lyell Esq., jun. The Edinburgh New Philosophical Journal 7:293-297 [M. Clapham/M. Clapham]more details

Purpose of describing collection: taxonomic analysis

PaleoDB collection 122877: authorized by Matthew Clapham, entered by Matthew Clapham on 06.01.2012

Creative Commons license: CC BY (attribution)

Taxonomic list

Insecta
 Hemiptera -
Cicadellites obscurus n. sp.4 Heer 1856 planthopper
Pl 6, fig 5 in Curtis, 1829
Aphis delicatula n. sp.4 Heer 1856 aphid
 Hemiptera - Cercopidae
"Aphrophora spumifera" = Ptyelus spumiferus3
"Aphrophora spumifera" = Ptyelus spumiferus3 Heer 1853 froghopper
Tettigonia spumariae affinis Curtis in Murchison
 Hemiptera - Lygaeidae
"Pachymerus fasciatus n. sp." = Diniella fasciata3, Heterogaster antiquus n. sp.3, Heterogaster pumilio n. sp.3, "Pachymerus pulchellus" = Aphanus pulchellus3, "Pachymerus dryadum n. sp." = Aphanus pulchellus3, "Pachymerus murchisoni" = Aphanus murchisonae3, "Pachymerus bojeri" = Aphanus murchisonae3
"Pachymerus fasciatus n. sp." = Diniella fasciata3 Heer 1853 milkweed bug
Heterogaster antiquus n. sp.3 Heer 1853 milkweed bug
Heterogaster pumilio n. sp.3 Heer 1853 milkweed bug
"Pachymerus pulchellus" = Aphanus pulchellus3 Heer 1853 milkweed bug
"Pachymerus dryadum n. sp." = Aphanus pulchellus3 Heer 1853 milkweed bug
"Pachymerus murchisoni" = Aphanus murchisonae3 Heer 1853 milkweed bug
"Pachymerus bojeri" = Aphanus murchisonae3 Heer 1853 milkweed bug
 Thysanoptera -
Thrips antiqua n. sp.4 Heer 1856 thrips
 Hymenoptera - Formicidae
"Formica minutula" = Lasius occultatus5, Formica oculata4
"Formica minutula" = Lasius occultatus5 Heer 1849 ant
Formica oculata4 Heer 1849 ant
 Hymenoptera - Ichneumonidae
"? Pimpla saussurii n. sp." = Pimpla saussurei4
"? Pimpla saussurii n. sp." = Pimpla saussurei4 Heer 1856 ichneumon wasp
 Coleoptera - Staphylinidae
Philonthus marcelli n. sp.4, Philonthus bojeri n. sp.4, "Lathrobium provinciale n. sp." = Xantholinus westwoodianus1, Lithocharis varicolor n. sp.4
Philonthus marcelli n. sp.4 Heer 1856 rove beetle
Philonthus bojeri n. sp.4 Heer 1856 rove beetle
"Lathrobium provinciale n. sp." = Xantholinus westwoodianus1 Heer 1856 rove beetle
Pl 6, fig 1 in Curtis, 1829
Lithocharis varicolor n. sp.4 Heer 1856 rove beetle
 Coleoptera - Chrysomelidae
Cassida blancheti4, "Chrysomela lyelliana n. sp." = Plagiodera lyelliana4
Cassida blancheti4 Heer 1856 tortoise beetle
"Chrysomela lyelliana n. sp." = Plagiodera lyelliana4 Heer 1856 leaf beetle
Pl 6, fig 4 in Curtis, 1829
 Coleoptera - Curculionidae
Cleonus leucosiae4 Heer 1847 snout beetle
"Sitona margarum" = Protainophthalmus margarus4 Germar 1849 snout beetle
Pl 6, fig 2 in Curtis, 1829
Phytonomus firmus n. sp.4 Heer 1856 snout beetle
Probably the Hypera mentioned by Curtis, 1829
Curculionites lividus n. sp.4 Heer 1856 snout beetle
Curculionites morosus n. sp.4 Heer 1856 snout beetle
Pl 6, fig 3 in Curtis, 1829
 Coleoptera -
Hydrobius obsoletus n. sp.4 Heer 1856 beetle
 Diptera - Bibionidae
"Protomyia livida n. sp." = Plecia livida4, "Protomyia brevipennis n. sp." = Plecia livida4, "Protomyia bucklandi" = Plecia bucklandi2, "Protomyia elegans" = Plecia bucklandi4, "Protomyia gracilis" = Plecia bucklandi4, "Protomyia lygaeoides" = Plecia lygaeoides4, "Bibio morio" = Plecia morio4, Bibio sp.6, Bibio curtisii n. sp.4, Bibio curtisii6
"Protomyia livida n. sp." = Plecia livida4 Heer 1849 love bug
Pl 6, fig 11 in Curtis, 1829
"Protomyia brevipennis n. sp." = Plecia livida4 Heer 1849 love bug
"Protomyia bucklandi" = Plecia bucklandi2 Heer 1849 love bug
Pl 46, fig 11 in Buckland
"Protomyia elegans" = Plecia bucklandi4 Heer 1849 love bug
"New genus allied to Penthetria" Pl 6, fig 10 in Curtis, 1829
"Protomyia gracilis" = Plecia bucklandi4 Heer 1849 love bug
"Protomyia lygaeoides" = Plecia lygaeoides4 Heer 1849 love bug
"Bibio morio" = Plecia morio4 Heer 1849 love bug
Bibio sp.6 Geoffroy 1762 march fly
Bibio curtisii n. sp.4 Heer 1856 march fly
"Strationidae nov. gen." Pl 6, fig 12 in Curtis, 1829
Bibio curtisii6 Heer 1856 march fly
 Diptera - Mycetophilidae
Mycetophila morio n. sp.4, "Mycetophila meigeniana n. sp." = Gnoriste meigeniana4
Mycetophila morio n. sp.4 Heer 1856 fungus gnat
Pl 6, fig 9 in Curtis, 1829
"Mycetophila meigeniana n. sp." = Gnoriste meigeniana4 Heer 1856 fungus gnat
Pl 6, fig 8 in Curtis, 1829
 Diptera - Sciaridae
"Cecidomyia protogaea n. sp." = Sciara protogaea4
"Cecidomyia protogaea n. sp." = Sciara protogaea4 Heer 1856 dark-winged fungus gnat
 Diptera - Limoniidae
"Limnobia murchisoni n. sp." = Limonia murchisoni4
"Limnobia murchisoni n. sp." = Limonia murchisoni4 Heer 1856 crane fly
Pl 6, fig 7 in Curtis, 1829
 Lepidoptera -
Noctuites deperditus n. sp.4 Heer 1856 moth
Arachnida
 Araneae - Theridiidae
"Theridium bucklandi n. sp." = Theridion bucklandi7
"Theridium bucklandi n. sp." = Theridion bucklandi7 Thorell 1870 cobweb spider
Spider illustrated on plate 47, fig 12 of Buckland, 1837