Project 2238: F. G. Marx, C.-H. Tsai, R. E. Fordyce. 2015. A new Early Oligocene toothed ‘baleen’ whale (Mysticeti: Aetiocetidae) from western North America: one of the oldest and the smallest. Royal Society Open Science. 2:150476.
Specimen: † Fucaia buelli (UWBM:84024)

Abstract

Archaic toothed mysticetes represent the evolutionary transition from raptorial to bulk filter feeding in baleen whales. Aetiocetids, in particular, preserve an intermediate morphological stage in which teeth functioned alongside a precursor of baleen, the hallmark of all modern mysticetes. To date, however, aetiocetids are almost exclusively Late Oligocene and coeval with both other toothed mysticetes and fully fledged filter feeders. By contrast, reports of cetaceans from the Early Oligocene remain rare, leaving the origins of aetiocetids, and thus of baleen, largely in the dark. Here, we report a new aetiocetid, Fucaia buelli, from the earliest Oligocene (ca 33–31 Ma) of western North America. The new material narrows the temporal gap between aetiocetids and the oldest known mysticete, Llanocetus (ca 34 Ma). The specimen preserves abundant morphological detail relating to the phylogenetically informative ear bones (otherwise poorly documented in this family), the hyoid apparatus and much of the (heterodont) dentition. Fucaia comprises some of the smallest known mysticetes, comparable in size with the smallest odontocetes. Based on their phylogenetic relationships and dental and mandibular morphology, including tooth wear patterns, we propose that aetiocetids were suction-assisted raptorial feeders and interpret this strategy as a crucial, intermediary step, enabling the transition from raptorial to filter feeding. Following this line of argument, a combination of raptorial and suction feeding would have been ancestral to all toothed mysticetes, and possibly even baleen whales as a whole.


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Article DOI: 10.1098/rsos.150476

Project DOI: 10.7934/P2238, http://dx.doi.org/10.7934/P2238
This project containsMatrices
  • 52 Media
  • 1 Matrix
  • 1 Document
  • 1 Taxon
  • 1 Specimen
  • 272 Characters
Total size of project's media files: 40 MB

Download Project SDD File
Total scored cells: 272
Total media associated with cells: 172
Total labels associated with cell media: 186
Characters
Total characters: 272
Total characters with associated media: 0
Total characters with media with labels: 0
Total character states: 635
Total character states with associated media: 0
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Total unordered/ordered characters:247/25
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MorphoBank Project 2238


    Members

    member name taxa specimens media chars character
    media
    labels
    cell scorings
    (scored, NPA, "-")
    cell
    notes  medialabels
    rules
    Felix Marx
    Project Administrator
    Last logged in 12/02/15
    115227200272
    (149, 120, 3)
    31721860


    Taxonomic Overview for Matrix 'M23561' (1 Taxon)

    taxon unscored
    cells
    scored
    cells
    no cell
    support
    NPA
    cells
    "-" cellscell images labels on
    cell images
    member
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    [1] † Fucaia buelli
    Last Modified in 09/10/15
    014901203172186none


    Project views

    type number of views Individual items viewed (where applicable)
    Total project views20256
    Project overview2177
    Matrix views1376Matrix landing page (1207 views); Fucaia (169 views);
    Documents list988
    Media views13252Media search (2011 views); M390797 (226 views); M390787 (226 views); M390819 (189 views); M390829 (215 views); M390786 (195 views); M390836 (211 views); M390790 (221 views); M390810 (192 views); M390830 (218 views); M390806 (221 views); M390834 (185 views); M390825 (193 views); M390818 (222 views); M390816 (243 views); M390833 (185 views); M390813 (221 views); M390793 (313 views); M390832 (212 views); M390823 (196 views); M390831 (204 views); M390788 (233 views); M390792 (225 views); M390812 (231 views); M390799 (228 views); M390822 (219 views); M390814 (209 views); M390804 (187 views); M390824 (205 views); M390794 (216 views); M390821 (207 views); M390802 (196 views); M390827 (211 views); M390820 (220 views); M390811 (207 views); M390835 (227 views); M395328 (230 views); M390795 (217 views); M390796 (207 views); M390826 (205 views); M390789 (194 views); M390800 (227 views); M390808 (215 views); M390807 (221 views); M390798 (191 views); M390815 (207 views); M390791 (262 views); M390809 (192 views); M390803 (206 views); M390817 (312 views); M390805 (233 views); M390828 (187 views); M390801 (226 views);
    Taxon list1023
    Specimen list938
    Bibliography502




    Project downloads

    type number of downloads Individual items downloaded (where applicable)
    Total downloads from project182
    Document downloads6Fucaia complete matrix (6 downloads);
    Project downloads152
    Matrix downloads24Fucaia (24 downloads);