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  • Phlycticrioceras trinodosum (Geinitz, 1850)




    Heteromorph Ammonite

    Kingdom: Animalia
    Phylum: Mollusca
    Class: Cephalopoda
    Order: Ancyloceratina
    Family: Anisoceratidae
    Genus: Phlycticrioceras
    Species: P. trinodosum
    Author Citation Geinitz 1850

    Geological Time Scale

    Eon: Phanerozoic
    Era: Mesozoic
    Period: Cretaceous
    Sub Period: None
    Epoch: Late
    International Age: Coniacian (middle/late)


    Austin Group
    Austin Chalk Formation
    Atco Member


    Collector: Me
    Date Collected: 03/04/2017
    Acquired by: Field Collection


    Diameter: 46 mm


    North Texas
    United States


    This heteromorphic species is characterized by an open plain spiral shape with slightly rursiradiate ribs and 3 sets of tubercles; 2 sets of ventrolateral tubercles, and 1 set of ventral tubercles. The whorl section is compressed and does not have constrictions in United States specimens but does have constrictions in many European specimens. The distance between ribs is roughly the same as the width of a rib. As far as I know, there are only two species reported for this genus, with the other being Phlycticrioceras rude from the late Santonian of France (Kennedy 1995). P. trinodosum is the only species reported in Texas. 


    This species shows two morphotypes, with the more commonly found robust from having a lower rib index and the less commonly found gracile form having a higher rib index. This dimorphism is likely sexual, with the robust form being female and the gracile form being male. This particular specimen is a robust form with a rib index of roughly 3 1/2, but some gracile specimens of this species exhibit a rib index of up to 8 (Emerson 1994). The highest rib index of a P. trinodosum specimen that I have found is 7, this being on a fragment of a very mature gracile specimen. That specimen (seen here) shows very weak ventrolateral tubercles, a trait shared with all the other gracile specimens that I have seen thus far. This is in contrast to the strong ventrolateral tubercles of the robust form.


    It was broken in two when it separated from the rock shown in the last photo, with its outer whorl being shown in the 4th and 5th photos. The outer whorl is 53mm long, and at the top where the whorl height is measurable, it is 16mm. You can see in the photos of the main part of the specimen, the impression of where its outer whorl once was. The complete specimen would be about 65-70mm in diameter if its outer whorl was still connected. 


    When applicable and needed, I have put the relevant pages for information, plates, and text figures at the end of references:



    Ulrich Kaplan und William James Kennedy (1994). Ammoniten des westfälischen Coniac. Geologie und Paläontologie in Westfalen, Heft 31, 155 S. Pages 53, 54; Tafel 37, Figures 2-4, 9-15 on pages 142, 143; Tafel 43, Figure 3 on pages 154, 155.


    Zdenek Vašíček (1990). Coniacian ammonites from Štíty in Moravia (Czechoslovakia). Sbornik geologickych ved, Paleontologie 32, Pages 163-195. Pages 177, 179; Plate VI with its explanation is on page 193.


    Young, K. (1963). Upper Cretaceous Ammonites from the Gulf Coast of the United States. University of Texas, Publication 6304, 373 pp. Pages 45, iv, 39, 47, 371; P. sp. cfr. douvillei on pages 45, iv, 23, 26, 29, 371; Plate 4, figures 2, 3 on pages 150, 151; Plate 11, figure 2 on pages 168, 169; text figure 7 f, h on pages 156, 157.


    W. J. Kennedy (1984). Systematic Paleontology and Stratigraphic Distribution of the Ammonite Faunas of the French Coniacian. Palaeontological Association, London, Special Papers in Palaeontology, No. 31. Pages 136, 137; Plate 32, figures 4, 11 on pages 140, 141; text figure 42E on pages 146, 147.


    David L. Clark (1963). The Heteromorph Phlycticrioceras in the Texas CretaceousJournal of Paleontology, Vol. 37, No. 2, pp. 429-432.


    W. J. Kennedy, M. Bilotte and P. Melchior (1995). Ammonite faunas, biostratigraphy and sequence stratigraphy of the Coniacian-Santonian of the Corbieres (NE Pyrenees). Additional links to information concerning this paper can be found here and with the species Phlycticrioceras rude, listed here.


    Kennedy, W.J. and Cobban (1991). Coniacian Ammonite Faunas from the United States Western Interior. Palaeontological Association, London, Special Papers in Palaeontology, No. 45, 96pp.


    Barbra L. Emerson, John H. Emerson, Rosemary E. Akers and Thomas J. Akers (1994). Texas Cretaceous Ammonites and Nautiloids. Paleontology Section, Houston Gem and Mineral Society, Texas Paleontology Series Publication No. 5, 438 pp. Pages 285, 286, 388, 422.


    Ulrich Andrew S. Gale, William James Kennedy, Jackie A. Lees, Maria Rose Petrizzo and Ireneusz Walaszczyk (2007). An integrated study (inoceramid bivalves, ammonites, calcareous nannofossils, planktonic foraminifera, stable carbon isotopes) of the Ten Mile Creek section, Lancaster, Dallas County, north Texas, a candidate Global boundary Stratotype Section and Point for the base of the Santonian Stage. Acta Geologica Polonica, Vol. 57, No. 2, pp. 113-160.



    The 1st, 2nd, 4th and 8th papers also contain information on Tridenticeras, another heteromorphic genus found in the Austin Chalk alongside P. trinodosum.



    A big thanks to DPS Ammonite. This is my first post to 'Collections' and he helped me get it all straight.   

    User Feedback

    Well, congratulations on your first post here. You've done a remarkable job!

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    1 hour ago, Ludwigia said:

    Well, congratulations on your first post here. You've done a remarkable job!


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