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Grube Messel grid square E8/9, 1.5-2.5 m above alpha marker (Eocene of Germany)

Also known as Messel Pit

Where: Hessen, Germany (49.9° N, 8.8° E: paleocoordinates 46.9° N, 4.8° E)

• coordinate based on nearby landmark

• small collection-level geographic resolution

When: Messel Formation, MP 11 (48.6 - 40.4 Ma)

• "lower Middle Eocene, lower-most Geiseltalian, Mammal Paleogene level 11... 1.5-2.5 m above local stratigraphic marker Alpha."

• bed-level stratigraphic resolution

Environment/lithology: crater lake; lithified, carbonaceous claystone

• "A drilling project conducted in 2001 showed that the former Lake Messel was a maar lake, which is a small deep lake that had its origin in an explosive volcanic eruption. The former lake basin had an original diameter of about 1.5 km, and a depth of about 300–400 m (Harms, 2002; Felder & Harms, 2004)."
• "The fossils are embedded in darkly coloured, finely laminated claystone sediments rich in organic substances (‘oil shale’), which were deposited in a meromictic lake (e.g. Goth, 1990)."

Size class: macrofossils

Preservation: adpression, soft parts

Reposited in the SMF

Collection methods: quarrying,

Primary reference: S. Wedmann, S. Bradler, and J. Rust. 2007. The first fossil leaf insect: 47 million years of specialized cryptic morphology and behavior. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 104(2):565-569 [J. Alroy/J. Alroy] more details

Purpose of describing collection: taxonomic analysis

PaleoDB collection 68475: authorized by John Alroy, entered by John Alroy on 23.01.2007, edited by Jered Karr and Matthew Clapham

Creative Commons license: CC BY (attribution)