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Western European vertebrate faunas and the end triassic extinction event


A major mass extinction. or maybe two, has been recognized for a long t at the end of the Triassic. This event, about 205 millions years ago, marked the disappearance of many vertebrate families and allowed the domination of the dinosaurs over the Mesozoic. These extinctions marked also the beginning of modern vertebrates on land (turtles, lizards, crocodiles, mammals, and perhaps even birds). However. the timing and extent of this great extinction are currently controversial. So, the aim of this project is to study the faunal changes in a key geographic area (Western Europe), allowing detailed work and a better understanding of the matter.
For 150 years, many bone-beds containing vertebrate remains (fishes, amphibians, reptiles (among them dinosaurs) and early mammals) were described in Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg, Italy, France and Great-Britain? Unfortunately, this material is often fragmentary and difficult to study. So, these faunas are indeed not well known.
For a better understanding of these faunas, and so of the End Triassic crisis, this project proposes four points:
10) Prospecting for new sites in France, Belgium, Luxembourg and Great-Britain.
20) Electron-microscope study of vertebrate microremains, particularly isolated teeth, which will allow better definition and recognition of the owners of these microremains.
30) 10) and 20) will permit precise correlations of the European Upper Triassic bone-beds, mainly based upon palynology and vertebrate paleontology.
40) Study of the timing and rate of extinctions at the Triassic-Jurassic boundary.

Call for proposal

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University of Bristol
EU contribution
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Queens' Road
BS8 1RJ Bristol
United Kingdom

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