Andrew B. Heckert

Andrew B. Heckert
Appalachian State University | ASU · Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences

PhD, University of New Mexico
Presently deeply involved with multiple major microvertebrate assemblages, one in Gondwana, one in Laurasia.

About

271
Publications
57,362
Reads
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4,192
Citations
Introduction
I perform field- and specimen-based research on Mesozoic vertebrate paleontology, principally in the American West but also including the Upper Triassic of the eastern USA, Argentina, Germany, and elsewhere. Myself and my students are engaged in multiple microvertebrate projects involving Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous specimens. I also continue to describe aetosaurs, a clade of Upper Triassic archosaurs known from strata of Late Triassic age across Pangea.
Additional affiliations
August 2005 - present
Appalachian State University
February 2002 - July 2005
New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science
Position
  • Geoscience Collections Manager
January 1993 - December 2001
University of New Mexico
Description
  • Completed MS (1997) and PhD (2001); served as teaching assistant, including head TA for physical geology labs.
Education
August 1997 - December 2001
University of New Mexico
Field of study
  • Vertebrate Paleontology
August 1993 - July 1997
University of New Mexico
Field of study
  • Stratigraphy, biostratigraphy
August 1989 - May 1993
Denison University
Field of study
  • Geology

Publications

Publications (271)
Article
Plastomeninae, a clade of fossil turtles that has recently undergone significant revision, are currently known from the Late Cretaceous to the Eocene, with some genera known to survive the end-Cretaceous mass extinction (e.g., Hutchemys). Only one taxon survives past the Paleocene into the Eocene (Plastomenus thomasii). Despite the majority of Hutc...
Conference Paper
As the fossil record of injuries and/or diseases, paleopathologies are one of the most direct insights into dinosaur paleobiology. In spite of the vagaries of vertebrate fossil taphonomy and the restriction that diseases must be recorded on hard parts, there are more than 400 reports of paleopathological dinosaur body fossils in the peer-reviewed l...
Article
Archosauromorph reptiles underwent rapid lineage diversification, increases in morphological and body size disparity, and expansion into new adaptive landscapes. Several of the primary early archosauromorph clades (e.g. rhynchosaurs) are easy to differentiate from others because of their characteristic body types, whereas the more lizard‐like and c...
Article
Full-text available
Aetosaurs are an early-diverging clade of “crocodile-line” archosaurs whose oldest records come from Argentina and Brazil. Articulated skeletons of aetosaurs are rare, but offer insight into their paleobiology. We describe here an incomplete, articulated posterior skeleton of an aetosaur from the Upper Triassic Ischigualasto Formation of San Juan P...
Article
Full-text available
The Placerias/Downs’ Quarry complex in eastern Arizona, USA, is the most diverse Upper Triassic vertebrate locality known. We report a new short-faced archosauriform, Syntomiprosopus sucherorum gen. et sp. nov., represented by four incomplete mandibles, that expands that diversity with a morphology unique among Late Triassic archosauriforms. The mo...
Article
Full-text available
Phytosaurs were a widespread clade of Triassic predatory archosauriforms whose skull anatomy is well known, but whose paleobiology is underexplored. Here we report on a well-preserved specimen from Adamanian (early-mid-Norian) strata in Arizona that includes not only the skull and lower jaws but much of the postcranial skeleton, which exhibits exte...
Article
Full-text available
The Triassic Period (252–201.5 Ma) records a great expansion of saurian diversity and disparity, particularly in skull morphology. Stem archosaurs exhibit substantial cranial disparity, especially by taxa either shortening or elongating the skull. This disparity is exemplified in the North American Late Triassic proterochampsians by the ‘short-face...
Conference Paper
We report here a new microvertebrate assemblage from the Upper Jurassic (~150 Ma) Morrison Formation of northeastern Wyoming.The Mogan Site assemblage was collected from the lower portion of the Morrison Formation, which primarily consists of bentonitic mudstones and shales. The dinosaurian fossils in the region are principally non-diagnostic bone...
Conference Paper
Complete version of this abstract online at: https://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2019AM/webprogram/Paper339845.html The Placerias/Downs quarry (PDQ) complex in east-central Arizona is the most diverse Late Triassic nonmarine vertebrate locality in the world, yielding dozens of taxa since the first excavations in the 1930s. The PDQ is low in the Chinle and...
Article
Full-text available
The vertebrate fauna of the Late Cretaceous Mussentuchit Member of the Cedar Mountain Formation has been studied for nearly three decades, yet the fossil-rich unit continues to produce new information about life in western North America approximately 97 million years ago. Here we report on the composition of the Cliffs of Insanity (COI) microverteb...
Article
Aetosaurs comprise a clade of quadrupedal, armored, omnivores to herbivores that lived across much of the supercontinent of Pangea during the Late Triassic. Their relative abundance in many units, and the rarity of other Triassic herbivores, points to them as key components of Late Triassic ecosystems. Debate persists about whether they were growin...
Article
Full-text available
Aetosauria is a clade of heavily armored, quadrupedal omnivorous to herbivorous archosaurs known from the Late Triassic across what was the supercontinent of Pangea. Their abundance in many deposits relative to the paucity of other Triassic herbivores indicates that they were key components of Late Triassic ecosystems. However, their evolutionary r...
Data
Data matrix used for TNT analysis Complete set of character scorings for taxa used for the phylogenetic analysis in this study. Provided in .txt format for ease of editing and use in multiple programs.
Data
Phylogenetic character descriptions List of character descriptions used in phylogenetic analysis. Characters 1–37 from Parker (2007) and characters 38–44 added by Schoch & Desojo (2016).
Article
Isolated teeth from the extinct hybodontoid Reticulodus synergus Murry and Kirby are known from Upper Triassic strata of Revueltian age in Arizona, Utah, and New Mexico, U.S.A. Here, we provide evidence for ontogenetic heterodonty in Reticulodus based on a reappraisal of the type and newly discovered material from the Upper Triassic Bull Canyon For...
Poster
Full-text available
This poster describes a rich assemblage of Upper Triassic coprolites from the Upper Triassic of east-central Utah. Many of the coprolites include identifiable fish scales and other bones and teeth.
Article
We describe a new species of the aetosaur Coahomasuchus , C . chathamensis , based on an incomplete, but largely articulated, anterior portion of a skeleton recovered from a quarry in the Upper Triassic Pekin Formation of Chatham County, North Carolina. This is only the second documented occurrence of Coahomasuchus , with the other being the holoty...
Book
Full-text available
The Rotten Hill bonebed is a Late Triassic fossil locality in the Texas Panhandle discovered by Floyd V. Studer in 1926, and collected primarily by WPA-funded excavations during the late 1930s and early 1940s. This locality is in the lower part of the Tecovas Formation (Chinle Group) and is of Adamanian (late Carnian) age. Forensic taphonomic analy...
Article
Full-text available
The Triassic vertebrate paleontological record of New Mexico includes important assemblages of tetrapod fossils from both the Middle Triassic Moenkopi Formation and the Upper Triassic Chinle Group. The Anton Chico Member of the Moenkopi Formation preserves primarily temnospondyl amphibian body fossils, but the record of reptiles comprises both spar...
Article
Full-text available
New Mexico has a relatively sparse Jurassic record of fossil vertebrates, much less than is known from either the Triassic or the Cretaceous strata in the state. The oldest Jurassic vertebrates from New Mexico are the osteichthyans Hulettia americana, Todiltia schoewei and Caturus dartoni from the Middle Jurassic (Callovian) Luciano Mesa Member of...
Chapter
Full-text available
Detailed modern stratigraphic studies on the Moenkopi Formation in the eastern Uinta Basin and vicinity are lacking, with very little work published since the 1970s. The discovery of chirotheriid reptile tracks assigned to Protochiro-therium/Synaptichnium and associated invertebrate ichnofossils in the Moenkopi Formation at Dinosaur National Monume...
Presentation
Full-text available
The Blue Hills, in Apache County Arizona, USA, are famous for their Late Triassic (Adamanian) vertebrate fossils. These badlands, southeast of the Petrified Forest National Park and northeast of St. Johns, Arizona, expose part of the lower Chinle Group, including both the Bluewater Creek and Petrified Forest Formations. The Blue Mesa Member of the...
Article
Full-text available
Aetosaurs are a group of quadrupedal, armoured pseudosuchian archosaurs from the Upper Triassic. They are characterized by dorsal and ventral carapaces, and appendicular osteoderms, all of them ornamented. Aetosaurs have been proposed as index fossils largely based on the distinctiveness of some osteoderms. Therefore, it is important to understand...
Article
Aetosaurs are an extinct clade of quadrupedal, heavily armored archosaurs that had a worldwide distribution during the Late Triassic. Aetosaur fossils from the Upper Triassic Pekin Formation in the Deep River Basin of North Carolina (U.S.A.) consist primarily of isolated osteoderms and, rarely, more associated material. Here we describe a new genus...
Article
Full-text available
We describe a new species of the aetosaur Desmatosuchus, D. chamaensis, from the Upper Triassic Snyder quarry, Petrified Forest Formation of the Chinle Group, Chama basin of north-central New Mexico. D. chamaensis is also present in the Bull Canyon Formation of east-central New Mexico. D. chamaensis is distinguished from the type and only other spe...
Article
Full-text available
An isolated tooth from the Tecovas Formation of the Chinle Group, Crosby County, West Texas, represents the oldest definitive record of a prosauropod dinosaur from North America. Its age is Adamanian (latest Carnian, approximately 225 Ma) based on vertebrate biostratigraphy, palynostratigraphy and other data. It is clearly distinguished from isolat...
Article
Full-text available
(Actually the introduction—no abstract) Research at the Solite Quarry (North Carolina–Virginia, USA) has altered our understanding of the depositional envi- ronment that preserved an exquisite Lagerstätte of Triassic flora and fauna of the Dan River–Danville basin. Data from the Solite Quarry indicate an alternative depositional environ- ment (shal...
Article
Full-text available
Aetosauria is a clade of obligately quadrupedal, heavily armoured pseudosuchians known from Upper Triassic (late Carnian–Rhaetian) strata on every modern continent except Australia and Antarctica. As many as 22 genera and 26 species ranging from 1 to 6 m in length, and with a body mass ranging from less than 10 to more than 500 kg, are known. Aetos...
Article
Full-text available
Here we describe five specimens of juvenile phytosaurs from several localities in the Upper Triassic Chinle Group of Texas and New Mexico. These include three specimens from localities in the Tecovas Formation (Texas) of Adamanian age and one each from the Revueltian-age Bull Canyon Formation and Apachean-age Travesser Formation of New Mexico. Alth...
Article
Full-text available
Trilophosaurus is a genus of Late Triassic archosauromorph known exclusively from the American Southwest. The defining characteristic of the taxon is its transversely arranged, tricuspid teeth. Here, we document various Trilophosaurus postcrania from the Krzyzanowski bonebed, NMMNH locality 3764, a multi-taxic bonebed located in the Blue Hills of A...
Article
Full-text available
Tooth enamel microstructure can carry significant phylogenetic, ontogenetic, and functional information within amniotes. Here we provide the first descriptions of the tooth enamel microstructure of two Late Triassic taxa, the crurotarsan Revueltosaurus callenderi Hunt and the putative ornithischian Krzyzanowskisaurus hunti (Heckert), which some con...
Article
: Doswellia sixmilensis is a new species of the doswelliid archosauromorph genus Doswellia named for an incomplete skeleton from the Upper Triassic Bluewater Creek Formation of the Chinle Group in west-central New Mexico, USA. D. sixmilensis differs from D. kaltenbachi Weems, the type and only other known species of Doswellia, in its larger size, h...
Article
The Late Triassic timescale is poorly constrained due largely to the dearth of reliable radioisotopic ages that can be related precisely to biostratigraphy combined with evident contradictions between biostratigraphic and magnetostratigraphic correlations. These problems are most apparent with regard to the age and corre-lation of the Carnian–Noria...
Article
Full-text available
The recent discovery of Triassic tetrapod fossils in the Picket Wire Canyonlands of southeastern Colorado necessitates large-scale modification of the currently accepted stratigraphy of the area. The bone-bearing strata lie stratigraphically above a thick (∼80 meter [m]) eolianite historically identified as the Middle Jurassic Entrada Sandstone. Th...
Article
Full-text available
The Moncure microvertebrate locality in the Cumnock Formation, Sanford sub-basin, North Carolina, dramatically increases the known Late Triassic age vertebrate assemblage from the Deep River Basin. The—50,000 recovered microvertebrate fossils include osteichthyans, amphibians, and numerous lepidosauromorph, archosauriform, and synapsid amniotes. Ac...
Article
Full-text available
Brachychirotherium is the common ichnogenus of Late Triassic chirothere footprints well known from western Europe, North America, Argentina and South Africa. Although it has long been agreed by most workers that the trackmaker of Brachychirotherium was a derived crurotarsan archosaur, the trackmaker has been identified as either a rauisuchian or an...
Article
A screenwashed microvertebrate site, the Mile 175 locality, in the Morrison Formation of Wyoming has yielded more than 3000 elements of actinopterygian fish and indicates that fish were not as rare in some parts of the formation as previously supposed. Actinopterygians are represented by diverse teeth and tooth-bearing bone fragments, fin elements,...
Article
Strata of the Moenave Formation on and adjacent to the southern Colorado Plateau in Utah–Arizona, U.S.A., represent one of the best known and most stratigraphically continuous, complete and fossiliferous terrestrial sections across the Triassic–Jurassic boundary. We present a synthesis of new biostratigraphic and magnetostratigraphic data collected...
Article
Located in Santa Fe County, New Mexico, USA, the Lamy amphibian quarry is a Late Triassic (Adamanian) bonebed stratigraphically low in the Garita Creek Formation of the Chinle Group. Well known for its mass accumulation of metoposaurid amphibians, it was initially interpreted as a drought-induced death assemblage. Based on microstratigraphic and se...
Article
Full-text available
Strata of the Moenave Formation on and adjacent to the southern Colorado Plateau in Utah-Arizona, USA represent one of the best known and most stratigraphically continuous, complete and fossiliferous terrestrial sections across the Triassic-Jurassic boundary. We present here a synthesis of new biostratigraphic and magnetostratigraphic data collecte...
Article
Full-text available
Venom delivery systems occur in a wide range of extant and fossil vertebrates and are primarily based on oral adaptations. Teeth range from unmodified (Komodo dragons) to highly specialized fangs similar to hypodermic needles (protero- and solenoglyphous snakes). Developmental biologists have documented evidence for an infolding pathway of fang evo...
Article
Full-text available
We report two nearly complete, articulated skeletons of the crurotarsan archosaur Typothorax coccinarum from the Upper Triassic Bull Canyon Formation of east-central New Mexico. These are the most complete, articulated aetosaurs from North America and provide a wealth of new anatomical and paleobiological data, including articulated presacral armor...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The boundaries of land-vertebrate faunachrons (lvfs) are defined on the first appearances of key index taxa that form the basis of a global Triassic tetrapod biochronology: FAD Lystrosaurus – Lootsbergian (Induan); FAD Cynognathus – Nonesian (Olenekian); FAD Eocyclotosaurus – Perovkan (Anisian-Ladinian); FAD Mastodonsaurus – Berdyankian (Ladinian-C...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The Whitaker quarry at Ghost Ranch, Rio Arriba County, New Mexico, USA, is one of the most extensive Late Triassic bonebeds known, yielding hundreds of skeletons of the theropod dinosaur Coelophysis bauri. The quarry also yields the following tetrapod taxa: the sphenodont Whitakersaurus, at least two drepanosaurid taxa, the sphenosuchian Hesperosuc...
Article
Full-text available
Here we report a tooth of a large archosauriform from the Upper Triassic of New Mexico, USA that displays developmental anomalies of carina formation. This tooth has two supernumerary carinae, both on the lingual side of the tooth. Previously, carina anomalies of this sort were primarily known from theropod dinosaurs, but always from the labial sur...