How Old Is the Wasatch Formation at Fossil Butte? – #365papers – 2017 – 119

#365papers for April 29, 2017

Gunnell, Zonneveld, and Bartels, 2016, Stratigraphy, mammalian paleontology, paleoecology, and age correlation of the Wasatch Formation, Fossil Butte National Monument, Wyoming: Journal of Paleontology, v. 90, p. 981-1011.

What’s it about?

Here is a nice description of all the mammalian species found from early Eocene rocks in Fossil Butte National Monument. Not only is there a list of fossil species, but they’re also put in chronological order, so that changes over time can be discussed.

Why does it matter?

For rocks deposited over the last 65 million years, the assemblage of mammalian fossils present is one of the most precise means by which we can assign an age. It is most helpful, then, when the opportunity presents itself, to work out detailed relationships of the various species over time.

Why did I read this?

This paper is kind of like my dissertation, only for the early Eocene and not for the middle Paleocene. Some of these species are relevant to my current research in the middle Eocene.


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