Taxonomy and palaeoecology of the Late Cretaceous (Campanian) Phymatellidae (lithistid demosponges) from the Miechów and Mogilno-Łódź synclinoria (southern and central Poland)


  • Ewa Świerczewska-Gładysz
  • Agata Jurkowska


Phymatellid demosponges are common fossils in the Campanian deposits of central Europe. In Poland, the Campanian phymatellids were known mostly from the opoka facies of the Miechów Synclinorium (southern Poland), where they occur mainly in the characteristic horizons of siliceous nodules in the lower Campanian opoka succession. Similarly preserved early Campanian phymatellids were identified in a redeposited lithistid assemblage in the Neogene gravels, exposed in the Bełchatów Lignite Mine (Mogilno-Łódź Synclinorium, central Poland). Rare phymatellids were noted for the first time in the upper Campanian gaize of the Miechów Synclinorium. The taxonomic descriptions of 16 phymatellid species presented here, including one new species, Kalpinella fragilis, completes existing knowledge of the taxonomic diversity of these sponges in the Late Cretaceous basins of central Europe. The present study also supplements the data on the stratigraphic ranges and spatial distribution of these species. The palaeoecology of Cretaceous phymatellids is discussed on the basis of their occurrence in the various facies.