Karsella hottingeri, Sirel, 1997: The first Paleogene "Orbitolininae" from the Thanetian of Turkey and Pakistan

Document Type: Original paper (Research paper)


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The orbitolinid Karsella hottingeri Sirel was described from the Thanetian of Turkey. In the current classification of the agglutinated foraminifera, Karsella is included in the Dictyoconinae (simple embryo, proloculus and deuteroconch). The original description and genus diagnosis is here emended to include the presence of a radial zone with septula in a zig-zag pattern and associated linear arrangement of foramina, as well as a complex embryo consisting of three parts, (i) proloculus, (ii) supra-, and (iii) subembryonic zones. This type of complexity is typical for the genera Mesorbitolina Schroeder, Conicorbitolina Schroeder, and Orbitolina d'Orbigny, belonging to the Orbitolininae. Therefore, Karsella must be excluded from the Dictyoconinae, and instead assigned to the Orbitolininae, thereby becoming the first Paleogene representative of this subfamily. The evolution of this complex type of embryo is considered as architectural convergence. It is missing in the second, Late Cretaceous (ConiacianMaastrichtian) diversification cycle of the Orbitolinidae. This observation strongly suggests that the "Orbitolininae" represent a taxonomic wastebasket and not a coherent phylogenetic unit.


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