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  1. Taxonomy from Fossilworks.org. Prepped by transfer method (Toombs, Harry; A.E. Rixon (1950). "The use of plastics in the "transfer method" of preparing fossils". The museums journal. 50: 105–107.) As far as I know, four bat genera with a total of 8 species are known from Messel: Palaeochiropteryx tupaiodon and P. spiegeli, Archaeonycteris trigonodon and A. pollex, Trachypteron franzeni, Hassianycteris messelense, H. magna and Hassianycteris? revilliodi. The genus Palaeochiropteryx is the most common and smallest bat from Messel with a wingspan of around 26 to 29cm. Archaeonycteris is rarer and somewhat larger - the wingspan is about 37cm. The largest bat in Messel is Hassianycteris magna with a wingspan of almost 50cm. Bat with partially preserved flight skin and ears. What is peculiar about this piece is that the bones show fractures. The forearm bones (ulna and radius) on both sides are broken in exactly the same place. Additionally, one of the lower legs may have been broken as well. Diagnosis from Russel & Sigé p. 124 (translated from French by oilshale): "larger size than Palaeochiropteryx tupaiodon. P3 relatively wider and shorter; protoconid lower; tubercles of lower molars less high and less acute; trigonid of M1 forming a more equilateral triangle; talonid of M3 notably narrow, and lower relative to trigonid. Upper canine relatively shorter and broader at its base than that of P. tupaiodon; its horizontal outline less acute posteriorly; talon of P³ broader lingually, with its posterior margin more transverse to the dental series; on M1-M², notch between mesostyle and parastyle less deep." Identified by Dr. G. Storch, Forschungsinstitut Senckenberg, Frankfurt a. M. Germany. References: Revilliod, P. (1917): Fledermäuse aus der Braunkohle von Messel bei Darmstadt. Abhandlungen der Großherzoglichen Hessischen Geologischen Landesanstalt zu Darmstadt, 7 (2), 162-201. Richter, G. & Storch, G. (1980): Beiträge zur Ernährungsbiologie eozäner Fledermäuse aus der "Grube Messel". Natur und Museum, 110 (12), p. 353-367. Russell, D. E. & Sigé, B. (1969) REVISION DES CHIROPTÈRES LUTÊTIENS DE MESSEL (HESSE, ALLEMAGNE). Palæovertebrata, Montpellier, 3 : 83-182, 29 fig., 6 pl. Simmons, N.B. & Geisler, J.H. (1998): Phylogenetic relationships of Icaronycteris, Archaeonycteris, Hassianycteris and Palaeochiropteryx to extant bat lineages, with comments on the Evolution of echolocation and foraging strategies in Microchiroptera. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History, 235: 1-182.
  2. oilshale

    Rhynchaeites messelensis Wittich 1898

    Prepped by transfer method (Toombs, Harry & Rixon, A.E. (1950). "The use of plastics in the "transfer method" of preparing fossils". The museums journal. 50: 105–107.) Taxonomy from Fossilworks.org. Since the holotype is apparently lost, a neotype was established by PETERS in 1983. This specimen is a paratype in the publication by PETERS 1983. Mayr 2002, p. 502: "In the original description, WITTICH (1898) considered R. messelensis to be morphologically closest to the painted snipes (Rostratulidae, Charadriiformes), and HOCH (1980) also erroneously redescribed the species as a charadriiform bird, ‘With columboid features”. PETERS (1983) first recognized Rhynchaeites messelensis as an early representative of the Threskiornithidae (ibises), and synonymized Plumumida lutetialis HOCH 1980 with Rhynchaeites messelensis WITTICH 1898. HOCH (1980) and PETERS (1983) gave detailed accounts of the osteology of R. messelensis." Diagnosis from Mayr 2002, p. 502: “The Rhynchaeitinae nov. subfam. are characterized by the following characters: (l) beak long, slender, and schizorhinal, tip slightly decurved, and proximal part of maxilla below narial openings dorso-ventrally high; (2) at least three thoracic vertebrae fused to a notarium; (3) coracoid with deeply excavated, cup-like facies articularis scapularis (fig. 1); (4) sternum with deep incisura lateralis and wide trabecula mediana; (5) carpometacarpus with wide symphysis metacarpalis distalis; (6) cristae iliacae dorsales of pelvis not fused with crista spinosa synsacri; (7) tarso-metatarsus shorter than femur.” Identified by Prof. Dr. D. St. Peters, Senckenberg Research Institute Frankfurt/M, Germany. In 1978, the Senckenberg Museum in Frankfurt organized a special exhibition "Fossils from the Messel Pit". The same fossil was in many exhibits that the museum had which included fossils borrowed from other amateur collectors. References: Wittich, E. (1898). Beiträge zur Kenntnis der Messeler Braunkohle und ihrer Fauna. Abhandlungen der großherzoglich Hessischen geologischen Landesanstalt zu Darmstadt 3(3):79-147. Hoch, E. (1980). A new Middle Eocene shorebird (Aves: Charadriiformes, Charadrii) with columboid features. — Natur. Hist. Mus. Los Angeles County, Contrib. in Sci., 330: 33—49. Peters, D. St. (1983). Die "Schnepfenralle" Rhynchaeites messelensis Wittich 1898 ist ein Ibis (The "snipe rail" Rhynchaeites messelensis Wittich 1898 is an ibis). Journal für Ornithologie 124(1):1-27. Mayr, G. (2002). A contribution to the osteology of the Middle Eocene ibis Rhynchaeites messelensis (Aves: Threskiornithidae: Rhynchaeitinae nov. subfam.). Neues Jahrbuch fur Geologie und Paläontologie Monatshefte 2002(8):501-512. DOI:10.1127/njgpm/2002/2002/501. Mayr, G. & Bertelli, S. (2011). A record of Rhynchaeites (Aves, Threskiornithidae) from the early Eocene Fur Formation of Denmark, and the affinities of the alleged parrot Mopsitta. Palaeobiodiversity and Palaeoenvironments 91(3):229-236. DOI:10.1007/s12549-011-0050-8. SMITH, N. D., GRANDE, L., & CLARKE, J. A. (2013). A NEW SPECIES OF THRESKIORNITHIDAE-LIKE BIRD (AVES, CICONIIFORMES) FROM THE GREEN RIVER FORMATION (EOCENE) OF WYOMING. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology, 33(2), 363–381. http://www.jstor.org/stable/42568675.
  3. Originally described by Schaal 2004 as Eopython fischeri, the snake was transferred to the newly created genus Eoconstrictor by Scanferla and Smith 2020. Taxonomy from Fossilworks.org Emended diagnosis from Scanferla & Smith 2020: "Medium-sized boid snakes, over 2 m in total length, differing from all other snakes in having the following combination of derived features: edentulous premaxilla with bifid vomerine processes; maxilla bearing four labial foramina and 15–18 maxillary teeth; palatine with five teeth and a long maxillary process; 11 pterygoid teeth; dentary with 18–19 teeth; sharp sagittal keel along the basioccipital; the vertebral column with up to 369 vertebrae, of which up to 72 are postcloacal vertebrae. References: Schaal, S. (2004) Palaeopython fischeri n. sp. (Serpentes: Boidae), eine Riesenschlange aus dem Eozän (MP 11) von Messel. Courier Forschungsinstitut Senckenberg, 252, 35–45. Smith, K.T. & Scanferla, A. (2016) Fossil snake preserving three trophic levels and evidence for an ontogenetic dietary shift. Palaeobiodiv. Palaeoenv. 96, 589–599. Scanferla, A. & Smith, K.T. (2020) "Exquisitely Preserved Fossil Snakes of Messel: Insight into the Evolution, Biogeography, Habitat Preferences and Sensory Ecology of Early Boas". Diversity. 12 (3): 100. doi:10.3390/d12030100
  4. Hello Fossil Forum, I've been interested in bat fossils from the Messel pit as well as one of the bigger Amphibians from the Permian since quite a while. As both are expensive items I don't want to make a mistake. I've found very little information about these fossils, especially for collectors, on the web. Interesting and useful information I found from @oilshale, like the one that Messel bats tend to show either good bone OR skin preservation. What should a good specimen feature and what should be avoided? Especially since both kind of fossils require special preparation techniques. As for Sclerocephalus, the following one is on display since many months, so I assume it's relatively expensive. It looks very good to me but what do the experts think about it? In every case I'm curious for the Munich Show next weekend as there have been examples of both fossils in the past. Thanks!
  5. oilshale

    Eurohippus messelensis

    From the album: Vertebrates

    Eurohippus messelensis (Propalaeotherium messelense) Haupt 1925 Eocene Lutetian Messel near Darmstadt Germany Length 62cm / 24" in foal, some of the bones belong to a fetus This DAWN HORSE is comparable in age and size to the one found in Kemmerer (Eohippus or Hyracotherium)
  6. Generally, the genus is assigned to the family Amphilemuridae, which according to some researchers is more closely related to today's hedgehogs (Erinaceidae). According to other studies, a closer relationship to the elephant shrews (family Macroscelididae) is also considered for the family. Taxonomy according to Fossilworks. Diagnosis for Pholidocercus hassiacus von Königswald & Storch 1983 (translated from German by oilshale): “A stout, ground-dwelling animal of a good 35 cm total length (head trunk just under 20 cm, tail a good 15 cm). In biological adaptation type, it is comparable to recent hair urchins (Echinosoricinae). Scaly dermal ossifications in the tail region; long bristly dorsal hair; probably possession of a horny plate over the forehead, the extension of which is indicated by deep vascular grooves on the skull roof; split terminal phalanges. I1/, C1/ and the persistent dP/1 relatively enlarged: C/1 premolariform; P/4 with dominant inflated protoconid, very small metaconid, and short broad talonid process; paraconulus and metaconulus of upper molars not connected by shelves to their respective outer styli, and paraconulus not connected to paraconid; lophid-shaped paraconid of lower molars reaches approximately lingual margin of teeth; hypoconulid of lower molars reaches approximately lingual margin of teeth; hypoconulid of lower molars located approximately median and somewhat prominent distally. See also emended family diagnosis.” Identified by von Königswald and Storch 1983 (this is one of the paratypes in their publication). In 1978, the Senckenberg Museum in Frankfurt organized a special exhibition "Fossils from the Messel Pit". The same fossil was in many exhibits that the museum had which included fossils borrowed from other amateur collectors. Reference: von Königswald, W. & Storch, G. 1983: Pholidocercus hassiacus, ein Amphilemuride aus dem Eozän der "Grube Messel" bei Darmstadt (Mammalia, Lipotyphla). Senckenbergiana Lethaea 64, pp. 447-495, 27 text-figs. Novacek, M. J., Bown, T. M. and Schankler. D. (1985). On the classification of early Tertiary Erinaceomorpha (Insectivora, Mammalia). American Museum Novitates 2813: pp. 1-22. Hooker, J. J. and Russell, D. E. (2012). Early Palaeogene Louisinidae (Macroscelidea, Mammalia), their relationships and north European diversity. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 164: pp. 856-936. von Königswald, W. & Storch, G. 1983: Pholidocercus hassiacus, ein Amphilemuride aus dem Eozän der "Grube Messel" bei Darmstadt (Mammalia, Lipotyphla). Senckenbergiana Lethaea 64, pp. 447-495, 27 text-figs. Novacek, M. J., Bown, T. M. and Schankler, D. (1985). On the classification of early Tertiary Erinaceomorpha (Insectivora, Mammalia). American Museum Novitates 2813: pp. 1-22. Hooker, J. J. and Russell, D. E. (2012). Early Palaeogene Louisinidae (Macroscelidea, Mammalia), their relationships and north European diversity. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 164: pp. 856-936.
  7. Most pythons live in the Southern hemisphere but they may have evolved in Europe. Beautiful German fossil yields clues. https://www.livescience.com/oldest-python-snakes-on-record.html
  8. Hi everyone Last Thursday I went to visit the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences in Brussels as a little pre-birthday trip. I have visited this museum several times in the past few years, but this time I took my camera with me and thought it might be fun to do a photo tour of the museum for this forum Beware, this will be quite a big topic that might take a few days to complete as I took nearly 750 photo's in the museum (a lot will have to be sorted out though due to blurry quality, photo's of only name tags and doubles) as I wanted to show pretty much all fossil displays Especially the Hall of the Dinosaurs, the hall of the Mosasaurs & The Hall of Evolution will be quite complete tours Starting off with some snapshots of the hall of the minerals. The meteorite display room
  9. This rock is listed as "Ocadia messeliana" fossil turtle from Messel, but is obviously a septarian nodule (you can clearly recognise it by the patterns and by the fact that there isn't a shell). It is indeed at first glance very similar to a turtle, but is not.
  10. Harry Pristis

    Eocene Dogfish

    From the album: BONES

    This is an Eocene dogfish (in the South, these are called "mudfish"), Cyclurus (Amia) kehreri, from the Messel Shale, around Messel, Germany. The "bituminous claystone" (think "oil-shale") around Messel constitutes a lagerstatte (plural: lagerstatten) of Eocene fossils, both land mammals and freshwater fish. Other fish associated with Amia in these lacustrine deposits include Lepisosteus, Amphiperca, Palaeoperca, and Thaumaturus. Along with these freshwater fish, plants, insects, crustaceans, mollusks, sponges, reptiles, mammals, birds, and amphibians are collected here. Fish from Messel take special preparation because of the crumbly nature of the shale. This fish was prepared on one side, then a layer of resin was poured over the prepared side. The now-stabilized specimen was then completely prepared from the other side, removing all the shale matrix, but leaving all the bones! Less-fragile fossils come out of the shale intact. There is a mind-boggling display of these Messel fossils in the natural history museum in Basel, Switzerland, which includes a number of articulated mammal skeletons. Worth a visit. From Oilshale: Class: Actinopterygii Family: Amiidae Messel Formation Hessia International Age: Ypresian Cyclurus kehreri, originally assigned to the recent genus Amia, was placed in Cyclurus by Gaudant (1987). Lit.: GAUDANT J. 1999a. — Cyclurus kehreri (Andreae) : une espèce clé pour la connaissance des Amiidae (Poissons actinoptérygiens) du Paléogène européen. Courier Forschungsinstitut Senckenberg 216: 131-165. L. Grande and W. E. Bemis. 1998. A comprehensive phylogenetic study of amiid fishes (Amiidae) based on comparative skeletal anatomy. An empirical search for interconnected patterns of natural history. Society of Vertebrate Paleontology Memoir 4. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 18(1, suppl.):1-690

    © Harry Pristis 2008

  11. oilshale

    Thaumaturus intermedius Weitzel 1933

    From the album: Vertebrates

    Thaumaturus intermedius Weitzel 1933 Eocene Messel near Darmstadt Germany
  12. oilshale

    Cyclurus kehreri Andrae, 1893

    From the album: Vertebrates

    Cyclurus kehreri ANDRAE, 1893 Middle Eocene Lutetian Messel near Darmstadt Germany Length 20cm
  13. Alternative combination: Ocadia kehreri or Palaeoemis kehreri. Information from Prof. Walter Joyce (Université de Fribourg): "The literature contradicts itself how many species of geoemyd turtles there are in Messel and I had no time to make myself a more exact picture. Hervet (2004) writes that there are three species in three genera, Claude & Tong (2004) that it is only one species, and that the different species of Hervet (2004) are only growth stages. If you follow Claude & Tong (2004), your fossil is Palaeoemys kehreri. If you follow Hervet (2004), this animal is called Franciella messeliana." Identified by Prof. W. Joyce, Fribourg. References: Stäsche, K. (1928) Sumpfschildkröten aus hessischen Tertiärablagerungen. Abhandlungen der Hessischen Geologischen Landesanstalt zu Darmstadt, 8 (4): 1-72. Claude, J. & Tong H. (2004) EARLY EOCENE TESTUDINOID TURTLES FROM SAINT-PAPOUL, FRANCE, WITH COMMENTS ON THE EARLY EVOLUTION OF MODERN TESTUDINOIDEA. ORYCTOS, Vol. 5 : 3 - 45. Hervet, S. (2004) Systématique du groupe "Palaeochelys sensu lato – Mauremys" (Chelonii, Testudinoidea) du Tertiaire d'Europe occidentale: principaux résultats [Systematic of the "Palaeochelys sensu lato – Mauremys" group (Chelonii, Testudinoidea) from the Tertiary of Western Europe: principal results. Annales de Paléontologie 90(1):13-78.
  14. oilshale

    Atractosteus messelensis Grande, 2010

    With 13cm SL a relatively small Atractosteus - the average length is probably about 26cm. Adult specimens exceed 60cm in length. Invalid names: Atractosteus strausi and A. kinkelini Quote from Grande, 2010: "In a redescription of the species of Atractosteus from Messel, Gaudant (2005) correctly noted that the name A. strausi (Kinkelin), 1884, based on an isolated ganoid scale "devoid of any diagnostic character" found in Miocene deposits of Frankfurt-Niederrad, cannot be applied to either of the Messel gar species because the name is inapplicable and a nomen dubium (he used nomen vanum but the International Code does not recognize this sometimes ambiguously defined term, so I follow Chorn and Whetstone (1978) and others in using nomen dubium). Gaudant (2005) offered a replacement name for A. strausi (A. kinkelini) but unfortunately, he did not clearly designate a validly diagnosable holotype for the new name. He instead chose a skull fragment (SMF P. 1676, consisting of several lacrimomaxillae and a partial dentary) to serve as a "Lectotype" (p. 131) for A. strausi, and holotype (caption for fig. 2, p. 112) for A. kinkelini. He stated that the "[reduced number of infraorbitals]" is the diagnostic feature of this specimen, but the specimen is missing its anterior end making a complete count of lacrimomaxillary bones (his "infraorbitals") impossible. The count of lacrimomaxillary bones in the Messel Atractosteus also falls completely within the ranges of A. spatula, A. tristoechus and A. simplex (Table 181). Therefore, this species is not differentiated with an applicable diagnosis. Also, the fragmentary type, like the Kinkelin scale, is "devoid of any diagnostic character." Therefore a new name is erected here for the Messel Atractosteus (Atractosteus messelensis sp. nov.) with a unique combination of characters to diagnose it and a nearly complete specimen as holotype." References: Grande, L. (2010) An empirical synthetic pattern study of gars (Lepisosteiformes) and closely related species, based mostly on skeletal anatomy. The resurrection of Holostei. American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists, Copeia, Special Publication 6, Supplementary Issue, 10(2A):1-871
  15. Prepped by transfer method (Toombs, Harry; A.E. Rixon (1950). "The use of plastics in the "transfer method" of preparing fossils". The museums journal. 50: 105–107.) As far as I know, four bat genera with a total of 8 species are known from Messel: Palaeochiropteryx tupaiodon and P. spiegeli, Archaeonycteris trigonodon and A. pollex, Trachypteron franzeni, Hassianycteris messelense, H. magna and Hassianycteris? revilliodi. The genus Palaeochiropteryx is the most common and smallest bat from Messel with a wingspan of around 26 to 29cm. Archaeonycteris is rarer and somewhat larger - the wingspan is about 37cm. The largest bat in Messel is Hassianycteris magna with a wingspan of almost 50cm. References: Revilliod, P. (1917): Fledermäuse aus der Braunkohle von Messel bei Darmstadt. Abhandlungen der Großherzoglichen Hessischen Geologischen Landesanstalt zu Darmstadt, 7 (2), 162-201. Richter, G. & Storch, G. (1980): Beiträge zur Ernährungsbiologie eozäner Fledermäuse aus der "Grube Messel". Natur und Museum, 110 (12), p. 353-367. Simmons, N.B. & Geisler, J.H.(1998): Phylogenetic relationships of Icaronycteris, Archaeonycteris, Hassianycteris and Palaeochiropteryx to extant bat lineages, with comments on the Evolution of echolocation and foraging strategies in Microchiroptera. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History, 235: 1-182. Russel, D.E. & Sigé, B (1969): RÉVISION DES CHIROPTÈRES LUTÉTIENS DE MESSEL (HESSE, ALLEMAGNE). Palaeovertebrata, Montpellier, 1969, 3 : 63-182, 29 fig., 6 pl.
  16. From the album: Vertebrates

    Archaeonycteris trigonodon Revilliod, 1917 Middle Eocene Lutetian Messel near Darmstadt Hessia Germany As far as I know, four bat genera with a total of 8 species are known from Messel: Palaeochiropteryx tupaiodon and P. spiegeli, Archaeonycteris trigonodon and A. pollex, Trachypteron franzeni, Hassianycteris messelense, H. magna and Hassianycteris? revilliodi. The genus Palaeochiropteryx is the most common and smallest bat from Messel with a wingspan of around 26 to 29cm. Archaeonycteris is much rarer and somewhat larger - the wingspan is about 37cm. The largest bat in Messel is Hassianycteris magna with a wingspan of almost 50cm. Lit.: Revilliod, P. (1917): Fledermäuse aus der Braunkohle von Messel bei Darmstadt. Abhandlungen der Großherzoglichen Hessischen Geologischen Landesanstalt zu Darmstadt, 7 (2), 162-201. Richter, G. & Storch, G. (1980): Beiträge zur Ernährungsbiologie eozäner Fledermäuse aus der "Grube Messel". Natur und Museum, 110 (12), p. 353-367. Simmons, N.B. & Geisler, J.H.(1998): Phylogenetic relationships of Icaronycteris, Archaeonycteris, Hassianycteris and Palaeochiropteryx to extant bat lineages, with comments on the Evolution of echolocation and foraging strategies in Microchiroptera. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History, 235: 1-182. Russel, D.E. & Sigé, B (1969): RÉVISION DES CHIROPTÈRES LUTÉTIENS DE MESSEL (HESSE, ALLEMAGNE). Palaeovertebrata, Montpellier, 1969, 3 : 63-182, 29 fig., 6 pl.
  17. Hey guys I came across this fossil on the internet. I dont think this is necessarily fake, but what are the chances this fossil has had some restoration or frabrication done?
  18. oilshale

    Eopelobates wagneri Weitzel, 1938

    From the album: Vertebrates

    Eopelobates wagneri Weitzel, 1938 Middle Eocene Lutetian Messel near Darmstadt Hessia Germany
  19. From the album: Vertebrates

    Palaeochiropteryx tupaiodon REVILLIOD, 1917 Middle Eocene Lutetian Messel near Darmstadt Germany
  20. From the album: Vertebrates

    Palaeochiropteryx spiegeli Revilliod 1917 Eocene Lutetian Messel near Darmstadt Germany
  21. A great new video from PBS Eons about the Messel Lagerstätte in Germany.
  22. Taxonomy from Smith 2009. Diagnosis from Smith 2005, p. 222: "Differs from G. longicaudus Kuhn, 1944 in lacking a strong ventral expansion of the coronoid and in having a clavicle whose ventromedial expansion is most extensive at the level of the clavicular fenestra rather than dorsolateral to it. Differs from G. grisolli Augé, 2005 in having a broader nasal spine of the premaxilla and a weaker and more rounded subdental shelf anteriorly on the dentary. Differs from G. lamandini (Filhol, 1877) in having a more restricted Meckelian groove, a more delicate anteromedial process of the coronoid, and distinct anterolateral and posterolateral processes of the coronoid." Identified by Dr. Krister Smith, Senckenberg Research Institute. References: Smith, K. (2009) Eocene lizards of the clade Geiseltaliellus from Messel and Geiseltal, Germany, and the Early Radiation of Iguanidae (Reptilia: Squamata). Peabody Museum of Natural History Yale University Bulletin, 50(2), October 2009: 219-306. Smith, K. (2016) The squamation of the Eocene stem-basilisk Geiseltaliellus maarius (Squamata: Iguanidae: Corytophaninae) from Messel, Germany. SALAMANDRA 53(4) 519–530.
  23. oilshale

    Geiseltaliellus maarius Smith, 2009

    From the album: Vertebrates

    Geiseltaliellus maarius Smith, 2009 Eocene Lutetian Messel near Darmstadt Germany Length 13cm Lit.: Smith, K. (2009): Eocene lizards of the clade Geiseltaliellus from Messel and Geiseltal, Germany, and the Early Radiation of Iguanidae (Reptilia: Squamata). Peabody Museum of Natural History Yale University Bulletin, 50(2), October 2009: 219-306.
  24. Prepped by transfer method found in: Toombs, Harry; Rixon, A. E. (1950). "The use of plastics in the ‘transfer method’ of preparing fossils". The Museums Journal. 50: 105–107. Picture 1: Body. Picture 2: Close up of skull and ear. Four bat genera with a total of 8 species are currently known from Messel: Palaeochiropteryx tupaiodon; Palaeochiropteryx spiegeli; Archaeonycteris trigonodon; Archaenycteris pollex; Trachypteron franzeni; Hassianycteris messelensis; Hassianycteris magna and Hassianycteris? revilliodi. The genus Palaeochiropteryx is the most common and smallest bat from Messel with a wingspan of around 26 to 29 cm. Archaeonycteris is rarer and somewhat larger, the wingspan is about 37 cm. The largest bat in Messel is Hassianycteris magna with a wingspan of almost 50 cm. Taxonomy according to Fossilworks. Diagnosis for Hassianycteris messelensis is from SMITH & STORCH, 1981: “Overall size large (Tab. 1); dental formula I 2/3 C 1/1 P 2(3)/3 M 3/3 = 36 (38), first upper premolar (P 2/ ) absent in messelensis n. sp. and reduced to a tiny spicule in magna n. sp.; third lower premolar (P /4) not molariform, metaconid lacking and taloned short; dentition massive and high; naso-maxillary branch of premaxillary moderately broad, palatal branch not well developed, premaxillaries not fused; nasals long; phalangeal formula (manus) 2, 2, 3, 3, 3; index finger not terminating with claw; fifth metacarpal markedly short compared to third and fourth metacarpals; radius extremely long and characteristically bowed.” Identified by SMITH & STORCH, 1981 (reference number Forschungsinstitut Senckenberg SMF 80/1381; this is one of the paratypes in their publication). Reference: Smith, J. D. & Storch, G. (1981): New Middle Eocene bats from “Grube Messel” near Darmstadt, W-Germany. Senckenbergiana biologica, 61 (3/4): 153-167. Richter, G. & Storch, G. (1980): Beiträge zur Ernährungsbiologie eozäner Fledermäuse aus der "Grube Messel". Natur und Museum, 110 (12), p. 353-367.
  25. From the album: Vertebrates

    Atractosteus messelensis Grande, 2010 (old name: Atractosteus strausi Kinkelin 1884) Eocene Lutetian Messel near Darmstadt Germany Length 81cm / 32 inch
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