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Clavisparsa d'Orbigny, 1853


D'Orbigny's illustrations of Clavisparsa clavata. Scanning electron micrograph showing two branches of Clavisparsa clavata. Scanning electron micrograph showing dilated distal end of a branch of Clavisparsa clavata. Scanning electron micrograph showing narrow branch of Clavisparsa clavata. Scanning electron micrograph of branch of Clavisparsa clavata.
Scanning electron micrograph of autozooids with terminal diaphragms  of Clavisparsa clavata Scanning electron micrograph of repaired branch of Clavisparsa clavata. Scanning electron micrograph of autozooids of Clavisparsa clavata.


Type species

Entalophora clavata d'Orbigny, 1850, p. 267
Cretaceous, Senonian, Fécamp, France

Types: MNHN d'Orbigny Collection 8267


Diagnostic features

  • colony erect, dendroid, narrow-branched, branch width increasing distally concurrently with a decrease in zooid length and closer spacing of apertures

  • autozooids fixed-walled, large, with elongate, slightly convex frontal walls pierced by transversely elliptical pseudopores; no distinct boundary walls; apertures longitudinally elliptical, often closed by a terminal diaphragm located at the base of the short peristome, approximately level with the frontal wall

  • kenozooids apparently lacking

  • gonozooid absent in types


Classification

Order Cyclostomata
Suborder Tubuliporina
Family Incertae Sedis


Remarks

The type species of Clavisparsa was first described by d'Orbigny in the Prodrome (1850, p. 267) as Entalophora clavata, and subsequently refigured in the Terrains Crétacé (?1851, pl. 621, figs 8-12) under the same name before being described (1853, p. 776) as Clavisparsa clavata.

Unfortunately, none of the approximately 25 specimens in the d'Orbigny Collection possess gonozooids. This means that the familial affinities of this 'vinculariiform' tubuliporine cannot be ascertained. Given the large size of the zooids plus the sunken terminal diaphragms, it is possible that Clavisparsa is related to the Cinctiporidae, particularly to Attinopora (see Boardman et al. 1992). This family, otherwise endemic to the New Zealand region and known to range from the Paleocene-Recent (cf. Boardman et al. 1992), appears not to possess gonozooids.


References

Boardman, R.S., McKinney, F.K. and Taylor, P.D. 1992. Morphology, anatomy, and systematics of the Cinctiporidae, new family (Bryozoa: Stenolaemata). Smithsonian Contributions to Paleobiology 70: 1-81.

Orbigny, A. d' 1850. Prodrome de Paléontologie Stratigraphique Universelle des Animaux Mollusques et Rayonnés faisant suite au cours élémentaire de Paléontologie. Tome 1. Masson, Paris.

Orbigny, A. d' 1851-1854. Paléontologie Française, Terrains Crétacé, 5, Bryozoaires. Masson, Paris, 1192 pp, pls 600-800.