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Miocene whale-fall community from Hokkaido, northern Japan

Amano, K and Little, CTS (2004) Miocene whale-fall community from Hokkaido, northern Japan. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 215 (3-4). 345 - 356 . ISSN 0031-0182


Whale bones have been found in two large concretions in the uppermost part of the lower middle Miocene Chikubetsu Formation, northwestern Hokkaido, Japan. The bone surfaces are coated in pyrite, and some of the most exterior bone portions and associated bone chips are extensively bored by an unknown organism, possibly microbial. Closely associated with the whale bones is a fossil mollusc assemblage including the mytilid Adipicola chikubetsuensis (Amano), Solemya sp., Vesicomya ? sp. and Calyptogena sp. and the gastropod Provanna sp. These molluscs represent a chemosynthetic community dependent on the decaying whale bone-lipids for nutrition, and the mytilids, vesicomyids and solemyids almost certainly had symbiotic chemoautotrophic bacteria. Since the Oligocene, small mussels, such as Adipicola or Idas, and vesicomyid bivalves have been common elements of whale-fall communities in the Pacific; Provanna similarly since at least the Miocene. However, there are some important differences between modern and fossil whale-fall communities, not least that there appear to be no shared species.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Japan, Miocene, marine, palaeofauna, whale
Institution: The University of Leeds
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Environment (Leeds) > School of Earth and Environment (Leeds) > Institute of Geological Sciences (Leeds)
Depositing User: Crispin T.S. Little
Date Deposited: 22 Mar 2005
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2014 04:03
Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.palaeo.2004.10.003
Status: Published
Publisher: Elsevier Science B.V.
Refereed: Yes
Identification Number: 10.1016/j.palaeo.2004.10.003
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/280

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