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A new Silurian Avicenia (Tabulata): taxonomy, growth pattern, and colony integration

Mikolaj K. ZAPALSKI & Aleksander NOWINSKI

en Geodiversitas 33 (4) - Pages 541-551

Published on 30 December 2011

A new heliolitid tabulate coral Avicenia kocyani n. sp. is described from Silurian erratic boulders from Pomerania (Poland). The new species has higher intracolonial variation than other heliolitids. The growth pattern in corallites of the new species is not correlated with the growth pattern in coenenchymal tubes. This phenomenon is probably caused by different gene expressions in corallites and common tissue. Coenenchymal corals with a common skeleton, developed as polygonal tubes may have two levels of colonial integration: lower, with uncoordinated growth of corallites and common tissue (as for example in Avicenia kocyani n. sp.) and higher, with a unified growth pattern throughout the colony (as for example in Heliolites diligensis Bondarenko, 1966). Heliolitids are known to show strong provincialism during the Silurian. The discovery of Avicenia Leleshus, 1974 in Europe (previously known only from Central Asia) shows that at least some of them had a wider distribution than previously thought.

Keywords :

Tabulata, Heliolitida, Silurian, growth pattern, colony integration

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