Aulotortus sinuosus, from Loeblich & Tappan (1987).

Belongs within: Tubothalamea.
Contains: Patellinida, Spirillinidae, Cymbaloporidae, Involutinidae, Lasiodiscidae, Tetrataxidae, Archaediscidae.

The forams that bind
Published 18 December 2017
Cross-section of Fabiania cassis, from BouDagher-Fadel (2008).

Here we see an example of Fabiania. Fabiania is a genus of foraminiferan known from the Eocene epoch that could reach a relatively large size as forams go, up to several millimetres across (nowhere near as large as some that I’ve covered on this site, maybe, but still respectable). It had a conical test with a rounded apex and a deeply excavated centre; depending on growing conditions, individual Fabiania might be a regular or a flattened cone. In its early stage, Fabiania had two globose thick-walled and perforate chambers; later chambers were cyclical and divided by horizontal and vertical partitions. The aperture of the test was a single row of pores opening into the large umbilicus. The wall of the test was thick and calcareous, and covered with coarse perforations on the upper side of the cone (BouDagher-Fadel 2008; Loeblich & Tappan 1964a).

Fabiania lived in association with coral reefs, often preferring the undersides of corals and other sheltered locations. It was primarily found around the mid-depths, not too close to the water’s surface but also not too deep (Bosellini & Papazzoni 2003). I’ve referred in an earlier post to another group of coral-encrusting forams, the acervulinids. Because reef forams tend to be cryptic (in more exposed parts of the reef they tend to get out-competed by coralline algae), and are often variable in morphology making them taxonomically difficult, they tend to be less studied than the reef’s more prominent components. However, forams may play a not so insignificant role in developing the reef’s structure, helping to bind the reef in place.

Systematics of Spirillinana
    |    |--PatellinidaM13
    |    |--Seabrookia Brady 1890C40 (see below for synonymy)
    |    |    |--*S. pellucida Brady 1890C40
    |    |    `--*Cerviciferina’ hilli Goddard & Jensen 1907LT64b
    |    |--+--Spirotrocholinidae [Spirotrocholinina]M13
    |    |  `--SpirillininaM13
    |    |       |--SpirillinidaeLT64a
    |    |       `--Conicospirillina Cushman 1927C40 [ConicospirillinidaeM13]
    |    |            `--*C. trochoides (Berthelin 1879) [=Spirillina trochoides]C40
    |    `--CymbaloporidaM13
    |         |  i. s.: Millettiana Banner, Pereira & Desai 1985M13
    |         |         Globigerinatella Cushman & Stainforth 1945M13, LT64b
    |         |           `--*G. insueta Cushman & Stainforth 1945LT64b
    |         |--Fabiania Silvestri 1924LT64b (see below for synonymy)
    |         |    |--*F. cassis (Oppenheim 1896) [=Patella (Cymbiola) cassis]LT64b
    |         |    `--F. cubensis (Cushman & Bermúdez 1936) (see below for synonymy)LT64b
    |         `--CymbaloporoideaM13
    |              |--CymbaloporidaeM13
    |              |--Cymbaloporetta Cushman 1928 [Cymbaloporettidae]M13
    |              |    |--*C. squammosa (d’Orbigny in de la Sagra 1839) [=Rosalina squammosa]LT64b
    |              |    `--C. bradyi (Cushman 1915)A68
    |              `--Halkyardia Heron-Allen & Earland 1918B-F08 [HalkyardiidaeM13]
    |                   |--*H. minima (Liebus 1911) [=Cymbalopora radiata var. minima]C40
    |                   `--H. bikiniensisLT64b
    |    |--Hottingerellidae [Hottingerellida]M13
    |    `--InvolutinidaM13
    |         |--Triasina Majzon 1954LT64a [Triasinidae, TriasinoideaM13]
    |         |    `--*T. hantkeni Majzon 1954LT64a
    |         `--InvolutinoideaM13
    |              |--InvolutinidaeM13
    |              |--Hirsutospirella Zainetti et al. 1985HW93 [HirsutospirellidaeM13]
    |              |--TriadodiscidaeM13
    |              |    |--TriadodiscinaeM13
    |              |    `--LamelliconinaeM13
    |              |--Planispirillina Bermúdez 1952LT64b [incl. Trochospirillina Mityanina 1957LT64b; PlanispirillinidaeM13]
    |              |    |--P. papillosa (Cushman 1915) [=Spirillina limbata var. papillosa]LT64b
    |              |    |--P. granulosa (Mityanina 1957) [=*Trochospirillina granulosa]LT64b
    |              |    `--P. spinigeraS05
    |              |--VentrolaminidaeM13
    |              |    |--Archaeosepta Wernli 1970HW93
    |              |    `--Protopeneroplis Weynschenk 1950 [incl. Ventrolamina Weynschenk 1950]LT64b
    |              |         |--*P. striata Weynschenk 1950LT64b
    |              |         `--P. cribrans (Weynschenk 1950) [=*Ventrolamina cribrans]LT64b
    |              `--AulotortidaeM13
    |                   |--AuloconinaeM13
    |                   |--ParvalamellinaeM13
    |                   `--AulotortinaeM13
    |                        |--Andersenolina Neagu 1994M13
    |                        `--Aulotortus Weynschenk 1956 [incl. Arenoividalina Ho 1959, Paratrocholina Oberhauser 1957]LT64b
    |                             |--*A. sinuosus Weynschenk 1956LT64b
    |                             |--A. chialingchiangensis (Ho 1959) [=*Arenoividalina chialingchiangensis]LT64b
    |                             `--A. oscillens (Oberhauser 1957) [=Trocholina (*Paratrocholina) oscillens]LT64b
    `--Archaediscoida [Archaediscacea]M13
         |    |--LasiodiscidaeM13
         |    `--PseudovidalinidaeM13
         |--Tetrataxida [Tetrataxacea]M13
         |    |--TetrataxidaeM13
         |    |--Akcayidae [Sabaudiidae]M13
         |    |--Pseudotaxis Mamet 1974R-CB96 [PseudotaxidaeM13]
         |    |    `--*P. eominima (Rauser 1948) [=Tetrataxis eominima]R-CB96
         |    |--Endotaxis Bogush & Brazhnikova 1983R-CB96 [EndotaxidaeM13]
         |    |    |--*E. minuta (Brazhnikova 1951) [=Tetrataxis minuta]R-CB96
         |    |    `--E. brazhnikovae (Bogush & Juferev 1966) [=Tetrataxis brazhnikovae]R-CB96
         |    `--ValvulinellidaeM13
         |         |--Valvulinella Schubert 1908R-CB96 (see below for synonymy)
         |         |    `--*V. youngi (Brady 1876) [=Valvulina youngi, *Palaeovalvulina youngi]LT64a
         |         `--Abadehella Okimura & Ishii 1975 [Abadehellidae, Abadehellinae]R-CB96
         |              `--*A. tarazi Okimura & Ishii 1975R-CB96
              |    |--Glomodiscus Malakhova 1973M13, HW93
              |    |--Uralodiscus Malakhova 1973M13, HW93 [Uralodiscinae]
              |    |--Tournarchaediscus Conil & Pirlet 1974M13, HW93
              |    `--Permodiscus Dutkevich 1948M13, HW93 [incl. Lensarchaediscus Porchinjakova in Miklukho-Maklay 1957LT64a]
              |         |--*P. vetustus Dutkevich in Chernysheva 1948LT64a
              |         `--P. ovalis (Porchinjakova in Miklukho-Maklay 1957) [=*Lensarchaediscus ovalis]LT64a
                   |--Tubispirodiscus Browne & Pohl 1973HW93 [TubispirodiscidaeM13]
                   |--Asteroarchaediscus Miklukho-Maklay 1956HW93 [AsteroarchaediscidaeM13]
                   |    `--*A. bashkiricus (Krestovnikov & Teodorovitch 1936) [=Archaediscus bashkiricus]LT64a
                   `--Planoarchaediscus Miklukho-Maklay 1956HW93 [PlanoarchaediscidaeM13]
                        |--*P. spirillinoides (Rauzer-Chernousova 1948) (see below for synonymy)LT64a
                        `--P. karreriR79

Fabiania Silvestri 1924LT64b [incl. Eodictyoconus Cole & Bermúdez 1944LT64b, Tschoppina Keijzer 1945LT64b; Fabianiidae, FabianioideaM13]

Fabiania cubensis (Cushman & Bermúdez 1936) [=Pseudorbitolina cubensis, *Eodictyoconus cubensis, *Tschoppina cubensis]LT64b

*Planoarchaediscus spirillinoides (Rauzer-Chernousova 1948) [=Archaediscus spirillinoides, Brunsia spirillinoides]LT64a

Seabrookia Brady 1890C40 [incl. Cerviciferina Goddard & Jensen 1907C40; SeabrookiidaM13, Seabrookiidae, Seabrookiinae]

Valvulinella Schubert 1908R-CB96 [=Palaeovalvulina Schubert 1921LT64a, Palaeovalvuloria (l. c.)LT64a; ValvulinellinaeM13]

*Type species of generic name indicated


[A68] Albani, A. D. 1968. Recent Foraminiferida of the central coast of New South Wales. AMSA Handbook 1: 1–37.

Bosellini, F. R., & C. A. Papazzoni. 2003. Palaeoecological significance of coral-encrusting foraminiferan associations: a case-study from the Upper Eocene of northern Italy. Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 48 (2): 279–292.

[B-F08] BouDagher-Fadel, M. K. 2008. The Cenozoic larger benthic foraminifera: the Palaeogene. Developments in Palaeontology and Stratigraphy 21: 297–418.

[C40] Cushman, J. A. 1940. Foraminifera: Their classification and economic use 3rd ed. Harvard University Press: Cambridge (Massachusetts).

[HW93] Hart, M. B., & C. L. Williams. 1993. Protozoa. In: Benton, M. J. (ed.) The Fossil Record 2 pp. 43–70. Chapman & Hall: London.

[LT64a] Loeblich, A. R., Jr & H. Tappan. 1964a. Sarcodina: chiefly “thecamoebians” and Foraminiferida. In: Moore, R. C. (ed.) Treatise on Invertebrate Paleontology pt C. Protista 2 vol. 1. The Geological Society of America and The University of Kansas Press.

[LT64b] Loeblich, A. R., Jr & H. Tappan. 1964b. Sarcodina: chiefly “thecamoebians” and Foraminiferida. In: Moore, R. C. (ed.) Treatise on Invertebrate Paleontology pt C. Protista 2 vol. 2. The Geological Society of America and The University of Kansas Press.

[M13] Mikhalevich, V. I. 2013. New insight into the systematics and evolution of the Foraminifera. Micropaleontology 59 (6): 493–527.

[R-CB96] Rauzer-Chernousova, D. M., F. R. Bensh, M. V. Vdovenko, N. B. Gibshman, E. Y. Leven, O. A. Lipina, E. A. Reitlinger, M. N. Solovieva & I. O. Chedija. 1996. Spravočnik po Sistematike Foraminifer Paleozoâ (Èndotiroidy, Fuzulinoidy). Rossijskaâ Akademiâ Nauk, Geologičeskij Institut, Moskva “Nauka”.

[R79] Ross, C. A. 1979. Carboniferous. In: Robison, R. A., & C. Teichert (eds) Treatise on Invertebrate Paleontology pt A. Introduction. Fossilisation (Taphonomy), Biogeography and Biostratigraphy pp. A254–A290. The Geological Society of America, Inc.: Boulder (Colorado), and The University of Kansas: Lawrence (Kansas).

[S05] Semeniuk, T. A. 2005. Fossil foraminiferal assemblages from Pleistocene seagrass-bank deposits of the southern Perth Basin, Western Australia, and their palaeotemperature implications. Journal of the Royal Society of Western Australia 88 (4): 177–190.

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