Bollettino SPI Vol. 54 (2)

Published in September 2015


  • Santi G., Lualdi A., Decarlis A., Nicosia U.& Ronchi A. (2015)

Chirotheriid footprints from the Lower-Middle Triassic of the Briançonnais Domain (Pelite di Case Valmarenca, Western Liguria, NW Italy)
pp. 81-90


Herein are described the first vertebrate footprints discovered in sediments of Early-Middle Triassic age of the Pelite di Case Valmarenca (Briançonnais Domain, Western Liguria, Northern Italy). The tracks are attributed to an archosaur trackmaker and assigned to the ichnofamily Chirotheriidae. The poor state of preservation has hindered ichnospecific assignment; however, the find is significant, because it allows the distribution of these archosaurs to be updated within the Triassic of Europe. Biochronologically, the footprints of the Ligurian Briançonnais can be assigned to the Biochrone II or the “Chirothere assemblage zone” indicating an early Anisian age.

  • Rosso A., Di Martino E., Sanfilippo R., Sciuto F. & Liow L.H. (2015)

Resurrection of an old forgotten name: the case of the Pliocene to Recent bryozoan Cleidochasmidra portisi (Neviani, 1895) from the Mediterranean
pp. 91-101


The discovery of living and dead specimens of bryozoan colonies currently assigned to Cleidochasmidra canakkalense Ünsal & d’Hondt, 1979 and concomitant examination of Neviani’s type material in the collections of the University of Rome “La Sapienza” allowed the conspecificity between this taxon and Smittia (Phylactella) portisi Neviani, 1895 to be explored. Neviani’s name has priority and the new combination Cleidochasmidra portisi (Neviani, 1895) is here proposed. First SEM photos of C. portisi support this proposal and contribute to illustrate the intraspecific variability of this species relating to the development of ovicells and frontal avicularia, the morphology of the orifice and the peristome, as well as the size of the orifice and the ovicell. The ability of C. portisi to grow beyond its substratum, and to colonise gravel-sized clasts on soft sediments of the intermediate to outer shelf settings occupied by different biocoenoses is described. This extant species, recorded as early as the Early Pliocene, is possibly endemic to the Mediterranean.

  • Seddighi S., Briguglio A., Hohenegger J. & Papazzoni C.A. (2015)

New results on the hydrodynamic behaviour of fossil Nummulites tests from two nummulite banks from the Bartonian and Priabonian of northern Italy
pp. 103-116


Settling velocities of 58 well-preserved tests of fossil Nummulites were experimentally determined using a settling tube. The tests were collected from the nummulite banks of Pederiva di Grancona (A forms of N. lyelli and N. striatus, Middle Eocene) and San Germano dei Berici (A and B forms of N. fabianii, Late Eocene), both in the Berici Mts. (Veneto, northern Italy). The data were compared with estimated settling velocities that the same specimens might have had in life conditions. This was done by reconstructing their densities simulating water-filled condition and, to simulate post-diagenetic effects, under calcite-filled condition. These simulations show that A and B forms, even if they greatly diverge in shape, volume and size, still possess comparable settling velocities, and that each nummulite bank is characterized by specific hydrodynamic parameters. The use of settling velocity as a parameter to quantify the hydrodynamic behaviour of particles in seawater enables estimation of palaeoenvironmental conditions such as depth, substrate and the energy scenario. Such information is useful in obtaining further insights into the genesis of nummulite banks, the autochthony or allochthony of which is still being debated. Our results point to an autochthonous interpretation.

  • Villa A. & Raineri G. (2015)

The geologically youngest remains of Trachyaspis lardyi Meyer, 1843 (Testudines, Cheloniidae): a new specimen from the late Pliocene of the Stirone River (Northern Italy)
pp. 117-123


A new specimen of the marine turtle Trachyaspis lardyi Meyer, 1843 collected from Piacenzian sediments cropping out in the bed of the Stirone River (Northern Italy) is herein described. The identification of the remains is based mainly on the vermicular ornamentation visible on the dorsal surface of the carapace plates, a diagnostic feature of the genus. Marine turtles assigned to Trachyaspis have also been found in other Italian localities as well as in France, Switzerland, Egypt, the United States and Japan, but all these remains come from Miocene sediments. The specimen from the Stirone River sediments is therefore the youngest known occurrence of the genus. Remains found in Egypt, the United States and Japan have been assigned to the genus Syllomus in the past, but other authors consider the two genera to be synonyms and Trachyaspis to be the valid one. The specimen found along the Stirone River bed is morphologically similar to other specimens that have been assigned to either Trachyaspis or Syllomus.

  • Manganelli G., Benocci A. & Favilli L. (2015)

Orculella bulgarica (Hesse, 1915) (Gastropoda, Pulmonata, Orculidae) from the Middle Pleistocene to the Holocene of central Italy: another eastern element in the fauna of peninsular Italy
pp. 125-130


Fossil Orculella bulgarica (Hesse, 1915) is reported for the first time from the Italian Peninsula, based on an unpublished record (15 specimens collected in Holocene deposits from Piano di Orgia; Tuscany, central Italy) and two published reports from the Middle to the Late Pleistocene of Latium and Tuscany, erroneously assigned to Orcula dolium (Draparnaud, 1801). Italian specimens match those from Turkey and Spain in all shell shape and size features. Orculella, like several other components of the Italian land malacofauna (for example the helicoidean genera Monacha and Helix, the parmacellid slug Parmacella, etc.), has an eastern origin and presumably colonized the peninsula at the end of the Pliocene or later in the Pleistocene through the Alpine sector surviving up to the early Holocene.

  • Sciuto F., Rosso A., Sanfilippo R. & Di Martino E. (2015)

Ostracods from mid-outer shelf bottoms of the Ciclopi Islands Marine Protected Area (Ionian Sea, Eastern Sicily)
pp. 131-145


This study aims to contribute to the knowledge of the recent ostracod faunas of the Cyclops Islands Marine Protected Area (Western Ionian, Eastern Sicily). The distribution of live and dead ostracod assemblages has been analysed in relation to the environmental parameters and the biocoenoses recorded in the area.

  • Rook L. (2015)

Dedication to Augusto Azzaroli (1921-2015)
pp. 147-159