Cerro La Cruz (Castillo Formation), Lara (Miocene of Venezuela)

Where: Falcon, Venezuela (10.4° N, 70.1° W: paleocoordinates 9.6° N, 66.7° W)

• coordinate stated in text

• outcrop-level geographic resolution

When: Castillo Formation, Burdigalian (20.4 - 16.0 Ma)

• The Castillo Formation has formely been regarded as late Oligocene in age (Wheeler, 1960), but more recent workers, including this reference regard it to be early Miocene. The Castillo Formation unconformably overlies Eocene rocks of the Misoa Formation, although neither upper or lower contacts can be viewed at the collection's section. The section comprises 87 m of clayey marls interbedded with numerous thin (<1 m) hardground units. The strata are underlain and overlain by sandstones, and the upper 15 m are gypsiferous. Most fossils were collected near the base of the exposures. The turtle skull was collected from the top, however.

• group of beds-level stratigraphic resolution

Environment/lithology: shallow subtidal; argillaceous marl

• A nearshore marine depositional environment. Calm water environment with fine-grained sediment. Corals may indicate mixed substrates in the region.
• Clayey marls

Size class: macrofossils

Reposited in the AMNH, USNM

Collection methods: quarrying,

• Collections deposited in the AMNH, MBLUZ (Museo de Biologia de la Universidad del Zulia, Maracaibo), and USNM.

Primary reference: M. R. Sanchez-Villagra, R. J. Burnham, D.C. Campbell, R.M. Feldmann, E.S. Gaffney, R.S. Kay, R. Lozsan, R. Purdy, and J.G.M. Thewissen. 2000. A new near-shore marine fauna and flora from the early Neogene of northwestern Venezuela. Journal of Paleontology 74(5):957-968 [A. Miller/A. Hendy/A. Hendy]more details

Purpose of describing collection: taxonomic analysis

PaleoDB collection 43063: authorized by Austin Hendy, entered by Austin Hendy on 09.08.2004, edited by Mark Uhen, Juan Carrillo and Philip Mannion

Creative Commons license: CC BY (attribution)

Taxonomic list

• Exhaustive for most faunal grousp, including decapoda, sharks, fluvial reptiles, whales, and includes on floral taxon. Identifications made by group of co-authors.
 Decapoda - Portunidae
Portunus oblongus Rathbun 1920 swimming crab
 Arcida - Arcidae
Anadara mirandana Hodson et al. 1927 ark
 Pectinida - Pectinoidae
 Ostreida - Ostreidae
""Ostrea" podagrina" = Ostrea (Ostrea) podagrina Dall 1895 oyster
 Mytilida - Mytilidae
 Carditida - Carditidae
 Cardiida -
 Cardiida - Veneridae
Chionopsis tegulum Brown and Pilsbry 1911 venus clam
Clementia (Clementia) dariena Conrad 1855 venus clam
Subspecies: Clementia (Clementia) dariena dariena
Cyclinella cyclica Guppy 1866 venus clam
 Cardiida - Solecurtidae
 Cardiida - Semelidae
Semele cf. zuliana Hodson 1931 clam
 Cardiida - Cardiidae
Trachycardium sp. Mörch 1853 cockle
Listed as Trachycardium sp. cf. 'Trachycardium' virile Dall, 1900
 Protobranchia - Nuculanidae
Saccella gracillima Jung 1965 pointed nut clam
 Neogastropoda - Melongenidae
Melongena venezuelana Gibson-Smith and Gibson-Smith 1983 snail
 Sorbeoconcha - Turritellidae
 Turbinoidea - Turbinidae
 Carchariniformes - Carcharhinidae
Carcharhinus cf. obscurus Le Sueur 1818 requiem shark
Carcharhinus cf. perezi Poey 1876 requiem shark
 Carchariniformes - Hemigaleidae
Hemipristis serra Agassiz 1843 ground shark
 Testudines - Podocnemidae
"cf. Podocnemis venezuelensis" = Bairdemys venezuelensis
"cf. Podocnemis venezuelensis" = Bairdemys venezuelensis Wood and Diaz 1971 sideneck turtle
genus indet. cf. "Podocnemis" venezuelensis
 Crocodylia - Crocodylidae
Crocodylidae indet. Cuvier 1807 crocodile
 Crocodylia -
Siquisiquesuchus venezuelensis1 Brochu and Rincón 2004 crocodilian
 Ungulata - Astrapotheriidae
Astrapotheriidae indet.4 Ameghino 1887 eutherian
MBLUZ-P-5021, 5022, 5023, 5024, 5028
 Cetacea -
Platanistoidea indet.3 Simpson 1945 toothed whale
Platanistoidea indet.2 Simpson 1945 toothed whale
not Notocetus vanbendini as listed by O'Leary
 Cetacea - Squalodontidae
"Squalodontidae" indet.2 Brandt 1873 toothed whale
 Cetacea - Iniidae
Iniidae indet.2 Gray 1846 toothed whale
 Cetacea -
aff. Prosqualodon australis Lydekker 1894 toothed whale
aff. Prosqualodon australis
 Arecales - Arecaceae
Arecaceae indet. von Berchtold and Presl 1820