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Palaeobiodiversity and Palaeoenvironments

Palaeobiodiversity and Palaeoenvironments

Editor-in-Chief: Peter Königshof

ISSN: 1867-1594 (print version)
ISSN: 1867-1608 (electronic version)

Journal no. 12549

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News, Awards & Highlighted Articles

A fossil Russian doll 

It is an irony of the fossil record that sites with the best preservation often yield the fewest fossils. In order to understand the way of life of extinct vertebrates – for instance, what a species ate – paleontologists must frequently draw inferences from the form of the teeth or study their chemical signature. A spectacular new fossil specimen from the world-famous Messel Pit, near Darmstadt, Germany, provides direct evidence on how two species lived. The specimen is a snake, in whose stomach is a lizard, in whose stomach is an insect.
Three trophic levels are preserved in a single specimen – like a Matryoshka doll. The snake, about 1 m long, is a juvenile boa relative.
The lizard belongs to a group of lizards, the basilisks, that today is found in Central America. The insect preserves some of its original coloration. Together with other specimens of these species, the new fossil shows how the diet of the snake and the lizard changed with age.

Now indexed in Thomson Reuters’ databases! 

Palaeobiodiversity and Palaeoenvironments is now indexed in Thomson Reuters' Science Citation Index Expanded and Journal Citation Reports. First impact factor will be announced in 2016 based on 2013-14 publications and their citations.
Publish in Palaeobiodiversity and Palaeoenvironments and be part of the success!

Senckenberg Award 

Articles published in this journal can be honoured with the "Alexander von Humboldt-Gedächtnispreis" (5,000 Euros).
One of the former Honorary Presidents of the Senckenberg Gesellschaft für Naturforschung, the late Dr. Hanns Christian Schroeder-Hohenwarth, donated the "Alexander von Humboldt-Gedächtnispreis" for the best article in one of the Senckenberg journals.
Each year, one or two outstanding articles will be chosen by the editorial board of each Senckenberg journal. The Senckenberg advisory board then selects up to four articles which will be forwarded to an independent, international scientific board. This board evaluates the submitted articles and will finally select one article for the price.

Senckenberg Award for outstanding article 2015 

We are pleased to announce that the Alexander von Humboldt-Gedächtnispreis 2015 was awarded to the authors of the following article, published in the special issue of Palaeobiodiversity and Palaeoenvironments entitled “The Sarmatian vertebrate locality Gratkorn, Styrian Basin”, M. Böhme, M. Gross, J. Prieto (Eds):
Manuela Aiglstorfer, Gertrud E. Rössner and Madelaine Böhme:
Dorcatherium naui and pecoran ruminants from the late Middle Miocene Gratkorn locality (Austria)
March 2014, Volume 94, Issue 1, pp 83–123.

Previous award winners: 

The Alexander von Humboldt-Gedächtnispreis 2013 was awarded to the authors of the following article, published in the special issue of Palaeobiodiversity and Palaeoenvironments entitled Taphonomic processes in terrestrial and marine environments (Wuttke M., Reisdorf A.G. (Eds):
Achim G. Reisdorf, Roman Bux, Daniel Wyler, Mark Benecke, Christian Klug, Michael W. Maisch, Peter Fornaro, Andreas Wetzel:
Float, explode or sink: postmortem fate of lung-breathing marine vertebrates
Volume 92, Issue 1, pp 67-81.
doi: 10.1007/s12549-011-0067-z

Selected Articles 

Take a closer look at the following selected papers.

CLAMP Online’: a new web-based palaeoclimate tool and its application to the terrestrial Paleogene and Neogene of North America (J. Yang et al)  

Fossils: Evidence for a Crime?
Special Issue: “Taphonomic processes in terrestrial and marine environments”
In seven articles new scientific findings in the palaeontological discipline “taphonomy” – such as on the much discussed weird posture of dinosaurs – are published.
CLAMP Online – a comprehensive terrestrial palaeoclimate tool at your fingertips.
Quantifying changes in climate over land is fundamental to understanding the Earth system and predicting future environmental change. Leaf fossils are particularly valuable in this respect because of their intimate interactions with the atmosphere and the proxy that currently yields the greatest range of climate variables, can be applied over the greatest length of Earth history (up to 100 Ma) and that has been most intensively studied regarding accuracy and precision is known as CLAMP (Climate Leaf Analysis Multivariate Programme). CLAMP is capable of yielding mean annual temperature, cold and warm month mean temperatures, the length of the growing season and precipitation during the growing season, seasonality in precipitation, humidity and enthalpy.
So far the application of CLAMP has been limited, however, by the need for specialist software and a knowledge of multivariate statistics, but here we introduce an online form of CLAMP that yields palaeoclimate data directly from a user-uploaded file containing a numerical description of leaf form, the generation of which is fully supported by protocols available through the CLAMP website (http://clamp.ibcas.ac.cn). This means that a CLAMP analysis can now be carried out by anyone without the need for specialist tools or mathematical training.
To demonstrate the power of CLAMP Online we have applied it to the analysis of 82 Paleogene and Neogene leaf fossil assemblages from North America, providing not only a comprehensive spatially and temporally diverse numerical resource for palaeoclimate model validation, but also an insight into the characteristics of different calibrations and the coherence of the physiognomic signature of fossil leaf assemblages in relation to environment over time.

Bernd Rendel Prize 2010 

Young author received prize for high quality article.
In September 2010, Palaeobiodiversity and Palaeoenvironments (90/3) published a special issue entitled “Triassic-Jurassic biodiversity, ecosystems, and climate in the Junggar Basin, Xinjiang”.
One of the authors, Juliane Hinz, has published her master-thesis on “A high-resolution three-dimensional reconstruction of a fossil forest (Upper Jurassic Shishugou Formation, Junggar Basin, Northwest China)”, where she combines modern modelling methods with Palaeontology. A short version of this thesis, containing the main results, was published in this journal.
As an acknowledgement for her high quality scientific contribution she received the Bernd Rendel Prize, awarded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG). This award is given to young scientists who have not yet completed their doctorate degree. The award is endowed with a prize money of EUR 2000, to be used for scientific purposes and attendance at conferences.

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  • 1.278
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    Aims and Scope


    Palaeobiodiversity and Palaeoenvironments is a peer-reviewed international journal for the publication of high-quality multidisciplinary studies in the fields of palaeobiodiversity, palaeoenvironments and palaeobiogeography. Key criteria for the acceptance of manuscripts are a global scope or implications of problems on a global scale significant not only for a single discipline, a focus on the diversity of fossil organisms and the causes and processes of change in Earth’s history. The topics covered include: Systematic studies of all fossil animal / plant groups with a special focus on palaeoenvironmental investigations, palaeoecosystems and climate changes in Earth’s history, environment-organism interaction, comparison of modern and ancient sedimentary environments, palaeoecology and palaeobiogeography.

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