Alberto Collareta

Alberto Collareta
Università di Pisa | UNIPI · Department of Earth Sciences

PhD

About

142
Publications
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Publications

Publications (142)
Article
The killer whale (Orcinus orca) and false killer whale (Pseudorca crassidens) are the only extant cetaceans that hunt other marine mammals, with pods of the former routinely preying on baleen whales >10 m in length and the latter being known to take other delphinids. Fossil evidence for the origins of this feeding behavior is wanting, although mole...
Article
Well-preserved remains of a Posidonia oceanica meadow have been found in a lower Pleistocene (Calabrian) succession cropping out near Fauglia (Tuscany, Italy). This paper analyses and describes the benthic foraminiferal community associated with this well-preserved Pleistocene P. oceanica meadow, with the purpose of testing the usefulness of forami...
Article
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The East Pisco Basin is one of the forearc basins that formed during the Cenozoic along the coast of Peru due to the subduction of the Farrallon-Nazca plate beneath the South American plate. The sedimentary fi ll of this basin is extensively exposed along the coastal Ica Desert, and includes a succession of Eocene to Pliocene marine sediments that...
Article
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The Cenozoic succession of the East Pisco Basin preserves the sedimentary record of several episodes of deformation of the forearc crust along the Peruvian margin. The 1:50,000 scale geological map presented here encompasses an area of about 1,000 km2 lying astride the Ica River, and contributes to our understanding of the timing and mode of basin...
Article
Shark–cetacean trophic interactions, preserved as bite marks in the fossil record, mostly correspond to isolated or fragmentary findings that bear limited information about major trophic patterns or roles. Here, we provide evidence of focalized foraging by sharks in the form of tooth bite marks over physeteroids fossil bones from the late Miocene o...
Article
Bioapatite of fossil bone and teeth is susceptible to alteration and ion exchange during burial and diagenesis, varying its Sr content through the geological time. Nevertheless, fossil shark teeth are a powerful proxy for both chronostratigraphic and paleoecological reconstructions, thanks to the presence of the enameloid, a hard outer layer consis...
Article
The present 3D Dataset contains the 3D models analyzed in Benites-Palomino A., Velez-Juarbe J., Altamirano-Sierra A., Collareta A., Carrillo-Briceño J., and Urbina M. 2022. Sperm whales (Physeteroidea) from the Pisco Formation, Peru, and their Trophic role as fat-sources for Late Miocene sharks.
Article
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A new ichnotaxonomic name, Transexcrementum cuniculus, is applied to tubular (cylindrical) tunnelings in coprolites. The type series of T. cuniculus consists of burrowed vertebrate (probably crocodilian) coprolites that originate from the Miocene Chesapeake Group of Maryland, U.S.A. These complex trace fossils exhibit the following combination of c...
Article
Among the turtle and whale barnacles, those included in the family Platylepadidae are mostly found partly embedded in the carapace and plastron of sea turtles. As a likely consequence of their fragile shell, the fossil record of these cirripede epizoans of marine chelonians is currently limited to two occurrences of Platylepas in Pleistocene strata...
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An incomplete cranium, three cervicals (including the axis) and two likely lumbars of a monodontid cetacean are here described from lower Pliocene (ca. 5.1-4.5 Ma) marine sandstones cropping out at Arcille (Grosseto Province, Tuscany, Italy). This fossil find comes from the same locality as the holotype of Casatia thermophila, which it resembles in...
Article
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New finds of remarkable coprolites (fossilized feces) are here reported from the famous Miocene marine sediments of the Chesapeake Group exposed along Calvert Cliffs (Maryland, U.S.A.). Although vertebrate coprolites have been described from these deposits, here we provide the first description of tiny invertebrate fecal pellets. Thus far, these fe...
Article
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Near the Fauglia village (Tuscany, Italy), a Calabrian (lower Pleistocene) stratigraphic succession crops out in a sand quarry. This succession is comprised of an alternation of sands and silts featuring an exceptionally preserved Posidonia oceanica meadow (preserving in situ rhyzomes and loose leaves) and an abundant and diverse assemblage of foss...
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The northward-flowing Humboldt Current hosts perpetually high levels of productivity along the western coast of South America. Here, we aim to elucidate the deep-time history of this globally important ecosystem based on a detailed palaeoecological analysis of the exceptionally preserved middle–upper Miocene vertebrate assemblages of the Pisco Form...
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Differing from the extant physeteroids, macroraptorial sperm whales are currently regarded as apex predators of the Miocene seas based on several morphofunctional observations. Here, we estimate the bite force of Zygophyseter varolai, a macroraptorial physeteroid from lower upper Miocene strata of the Pietra leccese formation (Apulia, Italy) using...
Article
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The ichnogenus Thatchtelithichnus Zonneveld, Bartels, Gunnell & McHugh was created for ring-shaped, roughly circular grooves affecting the outer surface of plastral bones of Eocene geoemydid turtles. Such traces were assumed to be attachment scars of aquatic ectoparasites (possibly ticks, leeches or liver flukes). Despite its well-distinctive aspec...
Article
We report on two clustering chelonibiid shells from Rupelian deposits of southwestern Germany. One of these specimens displays a tripartite rostral complex and disparietal radii that indicate the Oligocene species Protochelonibia melleni, which was known so far from isolated compartments only. A literature review reveals two additional, overlooked...
Article
Shark bite marks incising fragmentary ribs from a single specimen of the extinct sirenian Metaxytherium subapenninum are described from lower Pliocene shallow-water, marginal-marine (shoreface) deposits exposed at Arcille (Tuscany, Italy). Two of the bitten ribs display bite marks whose morphology matches that of juvenile teeth of the extant bluntn...
Article
The ocean sunfishes of the family Molidae comprise one of the tetraodontiform clades with the least known fossil record. Here, we report on what appears to be an isolated paraxial ossicle likely pertaining to the Molidae from a widely known marine vertebrate-bearing deposit of Southern Italy, i.e., the Miocene Pietra Leccese formation of Apulia. Th...
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The Miocene Pisco Formation, broadly exposed in the Ica Desert of southern Peru, is among the most outstanding Cenozoic marine Fossil-Lagerstätten worldwide. It is renowned for its exceptional preservation and abundance of vertebrate fossils, including a rich assemblage of whales and dolphins (Cetacea). Here, we integrate taphonomic data on 890 mar...
Article
Cetotheriids are a once diverse clade of baleen whales with a rich Miocene-Pleistocene fossil record. In the Northern Hemisphere, they are abundant along the coasts of the Atlantic, Pacific and the Paratethys but - surprisingly - not the Mediterranean. Here, we describe a partial mandible from the upper Miocene Arenaria di Ponsano Formation exposed...
Article
Here we report on two fossil teeth attributed to the blacktip shark Carcharhinus limbatus (Elasmobranchii: Carcharhiniformes: Carcharhinidae) from lower Pliocene (ca. 5.1-4.5 Ma) marine deposits of Tuscany (central Italy). A survey of the palaeoichthyological literature and online resources reveals that fossils of C. limbatus have been reported fro...
Article
The Eocene sediment successions of the East Pisco Basin (southern Peru) host an exceptionally rich and well-preserved assemblage of vertebrate fossils. However, due to the dearth of geochronological and biostratigraphic controls as well as of stratigraphic correlations, our understanding of these rocks and their fossil content remains elusive. This...
Article
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Among the turtle and whale barnacles (Coronuloidea: Chelonibiidae, Coronulidae, †Emersoni-idae and Platylepadidae), the members of the chelonibiid species Chelonibia testudinaria (Linnaeus, 1758) are known as epizoic barnacles that can attach to a rather wide spectrum of substrates (pri-marily sea turtles, crabs and sirenians). At present, three li...
Article
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Aetobatus (Myliobatiformes: Aetobatidae) is a living genus of eagle rays that occurs in shallow-marine, tropical and subtropical environments of the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans. Nowadays, Aetobatus does not inhabit the cool- to warm-temperate European and Mediterranean waters, though it is known from this broad region by virtue of several...
Poster
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Most of the ornamental stones used to decorate the city walls of the town San Casciano Val di Pesa (=SCVP, Tuscany, Italy) belongs to the Macigno Formation that is comprised of turbiditic, brownish to grayish, Eocene-to-Miocene clayey sandstone. This sedimentary unit features a plethora of exquisitely preserved sedimentary structures and trace foss...
Article
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The fossil history of turtle and whale barnacles (Coronuloidea: Chelonibiidae, Platylepadidae and Coronulidae) is fragmentary and has only been investigated in part. Morphological inferences and molecular phylogenetic analyses on extant specimens suggest that the roots of whale barnacles (Coronulidae) are to be found among the chelonibiid turtle ba...
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William Anderson Newman passed away on December 26th 2020 at his home in La Jolla, California, aged 93. Bill spent much of his academic life at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, and also had a long and enduring association with the California Academy of Sciences. A marine biologist with deep interests in palaeontology and geology, Bill made spec...
Article
Tube-dwelling cirratulids from the Miocene Chilcatay and Pisco Formations of southern Peru are described herein for the first time. These worms constitute tube aggregates cropping out in Burdigalian and Tortonian strata of the East Pisco Basin. These specimens are here referred to the extinct species Diplochaetetes mexicanus Wilson, 1986, which was...
Article
The extant blacknose shark Carcharhinus acronotus is a small-sized, tropical to warm-temperate carcharhinid shark occurring along the western Atlantic coasts from North Carolina (USA) through the Gulf and Caribbean regions to Uruguay. Here, we report on two carcharhinid teeth from lower Pliocene (4.07-3.76 Ma) strata of the Upper Onzole Formation e...
Article
We report on new fossils of chitinophosphatic brachiopods from Upper Pliocene (Piacenzian) marginal-marine clayey sands cropping out at La Serra (Tuscany, central Italy). Based on their morphological characters, these specimens are here assigned to the linguliform family Lingulidae and tentatively recognised as belonging to the extant genus Lingula...
Article
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Invertebrate taphonomy can provide significant information about the post-mortem processes that affected the fossil record. In the East Pisco Basin of southern Peru, a Panopea Ménard de la Groye, 1807 shell bed was found in the upper Miocene strata of the Pisco Formation, hinting at a peculiar biostratinomic and diagenetic history. This bed contain...
Article
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Here we report on four highly peculiar skate teeth from Arcille and Certaldo, two Pliocene localities of Tuscany (central Italy). While being attributable to Rajiformes and somewhat reminiscent of Dipturus and Rostroraja, these specimens display an unusual multicuspid tooth design that does not match any extinct or extant skate taxon known to date....
Article
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The lower Pliocene deposits of Pairola (Liguria, Italy) display the otherwise rare occurrence of rock-forming amounts of barnacles (mostly belonging to the extinct Euromediterranean species Concavus concavus). Three main facies are recognised in the investigated succession: a barnacle-dominated facies, which formed along a shallow (<15 m deep) near...
Cover Page
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Cover figure: The new skate Nebriimimus wardi, lateroposterior tooth in different views, from the lower Pliocene of Tuscany, central Italy (see article by Alberto Collareta et al.)
Article
Exquisitely preserved fossils of a new reef-building vermetid species from shallow-marine lower Miocene (Burdigalian) deposits of the Chilcatay Formation and upper Miocene (Tortonian) sediments of the Pisco Formation of Peru are here reported and described in detail for the first time. These finds are assigned to the living genus Thylacodes and rec...
Article
Facial compartmentalization in the skull of extant pygmy whales (Kogiidae) is a unique feature among cetaceans that allows for the housing of a wide array of organs responsible for echolocation. Recent fossil findings indicate a remarkable disparity of the facial bone organization in Miocene kogiids, but the significance of such a rearrangement for...
Article
The Middle Triassic is a key time span for understanding the evolution of archosaurs and the rise of Dinosauromorpha. A further source of information on this issue may be provided by the study of tetrapod footprints. We revise the tetrapod ichnoassociation of the Quarziti del Monte Serra Formation (Verrucano Group, Monti Pisani, Italy) and identify...
Article
Fossil bones, together with teeth, are the most common remains of vertebrates that could manage to get preserved over geological times, providing information on the diagenetic and fossilization processes that occurred in the depositional paleoenvironment. Fossil bones from the marine vertebrate Konservat-Lagerstätte in the East Pisco Basin and Saca...
Article
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We report 130 vertebrate fossils preserved as bony elements and the co-occurring assemblage of fish teeth and spines from the lower strata of the Pisco Formation exposed along the western side of the lower Ica Valley (East Pisco Basin, Peru). Geological mapping at 1:10,000 scale reveals that all these fossils originate from the Langhian–Serravallia...
Conference Paper
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Among extant rays (Elasmobranchii: Batomorphii), those assigned to the order Rajiformes are known as ‘skates’ and number some 290 species. The fossil record of Rajiformes is scant, and the low number of diagnosable extinct rajiform species contrasts with the high alpha-diversity of the recent stock. Here we report on four unusual skate teeth from t...
Article
A fossil caudal spine of a stingray (Elasmobranchii: Batomorphii: Myliobatoidei) is here reported from upper Pliocene (Piacenzian) shallow-marine deposits exposed at the La Serra locality of Tuscany (central Italy). In spite of being incomplete, this specimen displays an amazing maximum preserved anteroposterior length of 420 mm, which to our knowl...
Article
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We report on a partial skeleton of sperm whale (Cetacea, Odontoceti, Physeteroidea) from the Pietra leccese, a Miocene limestone widely exposed in the Salento Peninsula (southern Italy). This specimen was found in Tortonian strata cropping out at the Cisterna quarry, not far from the holotype of the stem physeteroid Zygophyster varolai. The presenc...
Article
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Nowadays, the living species of the terrapin genus Mauremys (Testudinoidea: Geoemydidae) are mostly found in eastern Asia, but three of them inhabit the Western Palearctic ecozone. In Italy, occurrences of living individuals of Mauremys are interpreted as records of alien species; however, a growing fossil record demonstrates that this genus has in...
Article
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Nowadays, the odontocete family Kogiidae is monotypic and only includes two species of diminutive relatives of the great sperm whale Physeter Linnaeus, 1758. Conversely, a growing body of extinct species indicates that kogiids were diverse and disparate during the late Neogene. The fossil record of Kogiidae is, to date, represented by several crani...
Article
While mostly hermaphrodite, thoracican cirripedes (stalked and acorn barnacles) are remarkable in presenting also androdioecy and dioecy. With few androdioecious exceptions, the majority of the acorn barnacles of the order Balanomorpha are hermaphroditic. One of the balanomorphs in which androdioecy has been verified is the turtle barnacle Chelonib...
Article
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(This is an 'informal' abstract. As the present publication is a short note, it has no abstract.) The fossil history of turtle and whale barnacles (Coronuloidea) is fragmentary and has only been investigated in part. In particular, fossils attributed to the currently monotypic family Chelonibiidae mostly consist of remains of the extant genus Chel...
Article
A recent reappraisal of two passages in Leonardo da Vinci’s Codex Arundel, in which the then young Leonardo reports on visiting a cave and on some sort of ʽmarine monster’, has led to the proposition that Leonardo observed and wrote on fossil remains of a whale preserved in a cave. Whereas this hypothesis appears reasonable overall, some problems p...
Article
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The moderately rich past diversity of the superfamily Inioidea (Cetacea, Odontoceti) in both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans contrasts with the present survival of a single genus (Inia, Amazon river dolphin, family Iniidae) in freshwater deposits of South America and of a single species (Pontoporia blainvillei, franciscana, family Pontoporiidae) al...
Article
Although still exceedingly rare, the number of known vertebrate-bitten coprolites continues to increase. A vertebrate-bitten coprolite is herein reported from the Piscataway Member of the upper Paleocene Aquia Formation at Liverpool Point, Maryland, U.S.A. The specimen is described, figured, and chemically characterized by means of non-destructive...
Conference Paper
We seek to elucidate the Cenozoic history of the upwelling system off Peru-Chile, which currently forms the basis for one of the most productive fisheries in the world. To pursue this aim, we investigate the outstanding record of Eocene–Pliocene sedimentation and associated marine fossils in the East Pisco Basin of southern Peru, where the lower Mi...
Article
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Modern sawfishes (Rhinopristiformes: Pristidae) are circumglobally distributed in warm waters and are common in proximal marine and even freshwater habitats. The fossil record of modern pristid genera (i.e., Pristis and Anoxypristis) dates back to the early Eocene and is mostly represented by isolated rostral spines and oral teeth, with phosphatise...
Article
Well-preserved fossils of benthic marine invertebrates, including decapod crustaceans, are often found in the Pliocene sediments that constitute the substratum of the hills of Tuscany. Year after year, new or “exotic” taxa are found and documented, mostly thanks to isolated finds. In systematic paleontology, the ideal condition for instituting a ne...
Article
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The gray whale Eschrichtius robustus, the only living member of the eschrichtiid lineage, currently inhabits only the North Pacific. Interestingly, however, the holotypes of both E. robustus and the late Miocene Archaeschrich-tius ruggieroi (the oldest known eschrichtiid species) come from the North Atlantic and the Mediterranean, respectively. Her...
Article
Sharks assigned to the carcharhiniform family Scyliorhinidae account for about 160 extant species placed in 18 genera. Most living scyliorhinids are small- to medium-sized ground sharks provided with cat- like eyes and nasal barbels similar to whiskers; hence their vernacular name, “catsharks”. Living catsharks mostly inhabit deep or rather deep wa...
Article
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The extinct family Squalodontidae consists of heterodont, medium-sized odontocetes, featuring a long rostrum that houses large, procumbent incisors and heavily ornamented postcanine teeth carrying accessory denticles, hence their vernacular name, "shark-toothed dolphins". These longirostrine toothed whales are often seen as bridging the anatomical...
Article
New age estimates obtained via Strontium Isotope (87 Sr/ 86 Sr) Stratigraphy and new paleoclimatic data are here presented for the Miocene Chilcatay and Pisco formations exposed in the East Pisco Basin, an Andean forearc basin of southern Peru, which is renowned worldwide for its exceptional content of fossil marine vertebrates. Mol-lusk and barnac...