Samstag, 17. Oktober 2009

Madygen News 2009

Expedition. This year's two month expedition to Madygen, Kyrgyzstan, ends in about a week. Rather than merely assembling more fossils the task for 2009 was to carry out further observations concerning the facies architecture and fine stratigraphy of the Madygen Formation - in fact to solve the evolution of the Madygen depositional environment throughout the time comprised by the Triassic sequence of the Madygen SW outcrop area.

Since the ways of communication between Germany and the Kyrgyz outback are difficult I didn't get much of an opportunity yet to talk to Madygen project leader Sebastian Voigt (my de facto chief who is still in the field). But from what I've heard the paleoenvironment is now well explained and some furthergoing approaches, e.g. comparing the conditions of Madygen to those of the other (few) terrestrial lagerstätten of the Triassic, are now feasible.

Symposia contributions and papers

- on the flora:

Moisan, P., H. Kerp, S. Voigt, C. Pott & M. Buchwitz (2009): Cycadophyte foliage from the Triassic Madygen Formation, SW Kyrgyzstan Central Asia. Terra Nova 2009/3:81-82. [Abstract Volume of Annual Meeting of the German Paleontological Society in Bonn] ... the respective paper is soon to come.

- on kazacharthran body and trace fossils: ... still in the review process.

- on fish:

Kogan, I., K. Schönberger, J. Fischer, S. Voigt & M. Buchwitz (2009): A nearly complete Saurichthys specimen from the Triassic of Madygen (Kyrgyzstan, Central Asia). Terra Nova 2009/3: 63-64.

A first note on this find will published at the end of 2009 in Freiberger Forschungshefte.

SVP poster on egg capsules and teeth of hybodont sharks, which have been discovered in 2008: Fischer, J., S. Voigt, M. Buchwitz & J.W. Schneider (2009): The selachian fauna from the non-marine Middle to Late Triassic Madygen Formation (Kyrgyzstan, Middle Asia): preliminary results. JVP 29 (3, suppl.): 95A-96A.

- on chroniosuchians:

Buchwitz, M. & S. Voigt (2009): Locomotion aspects of a chroniosuchid carapace. In: D. Schwarz-Wings, O. Wings & F. Sattler (eds.): 7th Annual Meeting of the European Association of Vertebrate Paleontologis - Abstract Volume. Aachen, 2009, p.14.

Buchwitz, M. & S. Voigt (2009): Phylogenetic and functional implications of the chroniosuchian osteoderm morphology. Terra Nova 2009/3: 25.

I'm trying hard to finish these manuscripts just now. The first description of the new chroniosuchid species, focussing on the skull features, is 'in press'.

- about the thing that must not be named:

Buchwitz, M., S. Voigt & J. Fischer (2009): Dorsal appendages of You-know-what reconsidered: aspects of development and the link to the evolution of filamentous integumentary structures. JVP 29 (3, suppl.): 72A.

...there is another longer manuscript putting some effort into the detailed description/documentation and a discussion of some rather modest model (... but I cannot really tell yet whether an 'accept' is feasible in the near future).

- on the depositional environment of the Lagerstätte Madygen and its tetrapod localities:

Voigt, S., M. Buchwitz, J. Fischer, P. Moisan & I. Kogan (2009): Lagerstätte Madygen - outstanding window to a continental Triassic ecosystem. JVP 29 (3, suppl.): 196A.

Buchwitz, M., S. Voigt, J. Hentschke & P. Moisan (2009): The Triassic Madygen Formation (Kyrgyzstan, Middle Asia) features a new tetrapod locality. Terra Nova 2009/3: 25-26.

...the latter poster introduces some (real) archosaur finds from 2008.

Sonntag, 4. Oktober 2009

Questionnaire for Geobloggers
(incl. Paleobloggers)

The organisator is my former study colleage Lutz Geißler (now M.Sc. in geology), who is at the German forefront of publicising geoscience - with his web portals,, and with his postcard/ poster/ online campaign "Wir sind überall." ("We are everythere!" - referring to the role geoscience plays in daily life/ for the satisfaction of basic needs).