HORNUNG, T. (2005)

Saurorhynchus brevirostris (Woodward 1898) aus den Papierschiefern von Kremmeldorf
(Unt. Toarc, Ldk. Bamberg / Ofr.)

Saurorhynchus brevirostris (Woodward 1898) from the "Paper Shales" of Kremmeldorf
(Lower Toarcian, Bamberg County / Upper Franconia)



The Early Toarcien "Paper Shales" of Upper Franconia, locally termed "Posidonia Shales", are nowhere as well known
as isochronously deposited "Oil Shales" of the Swabian region (Baden-Württemberg) which contain rich vertebrate faunal assemblages. In Franconia, findings of large fossils such as reptiles, sharks etc. are very rare and restricted
to few locations (e.g. Unnersdorf near Lichtenfels, Mistelgau near Bayreuth as well as Unterstürmig near Forchheim). Due to their fragility, also findings of complete articulate skeletons of fishes are very uncommon - unlike to disarti-culate skeleton elements, which occur rock-forming in some "bonebeds" within the Upper "Posidonia Shales" (e.g. Trainmeusel - see Schirmer 2000).
Aside from the common invertebrate faunule (bivalves, ammonites and rare gastropods), a relatively unknown outcrop near the village Kremmeldorf (ca. 8 km ENE Bamberg), provides also and articulate mandible of Saurorhynchus brevirostris as well as dislocated skeletal remains (found in 1996). The Early Toarcien of this location is mentioned
and described by Baader 1921 and Antondis et al. 1972, however, at present the outcrop is overgrown and difficult to access.
During the Triassic and the Early Jurassic the Saurichthyids had a world-wide distribution. Due to its wide occurrence and pike-like body it is considered to be one of the top predators among the ichthyofaunas. However, this condrostean group disappeared during the end of Early Jurassic.


published in: - Geol. Bl. NO-Bayern 55: 31-46, Erlangen