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Middle Triassic archosaur tracks suggest migration for horseshoe-crab spawning



From: Ben Creisler
bcreisler@gmail.com

A new paper:


Cajus G. Diedrich (2012)
Middle Triassic chirotherid trackways on earthquake influenced
intertidal limulid reproduction flats of the European Germanic Basin
coasts.
Central European Journal of Geosciences 4 (3): 495-529
DOI: 10.2478/s13533-011-0080-9
http://www.springerlink.com/content/053hu46202674752/

Chirotherid footprints of Synaptichnium, Chirotherium and
Isochirotherium appeared during the late Early (Aegean) to early Late
(Carnian) Triassic in central Europe. These taxa are partly revised
herein, using both perfect and variably preserved tracks, and very
long trackways from an upper Pelsonian intertidal-flat megatracksite
of the Germanic Basin coast Pelsonian (Karlstadt Formation). The
global Middle Triassic distribution of those footprints suggests
seasonal migrations across Pangaea of possible archosauriform reptile
trackmakers, such as Euparkeria, Ticinosuchus, Arizonasaurus and
Batrachotomus, caused by horseshoe-crab mass migrations into
tidal-flat beach reproductive zones in the Germanic Basin. Such
seasonal migrations may even suggest a Pangaea-wide food-chain
reaction, possibly including the mobilization of fish, marine and
terrestrial reptiles, and of which situation the Germanic Basin
intertidal-flats is a globally unique example.