Wednesday 6 September 2017

Reisia rieki: A stem-group Dragonfly from the Late Triassic of the Eastern Cape, South Africa.

The Triadotypomorpha are a group of stem-group Odonata (Dragonflies and Damselflies), that is to say they are more closely related to Dradonflies and Damselflies than to any other Insects, but all living Draginflies and Damselflies are more closely related to one-another than they are to the Triadotypomorpha, known from the Triassic of Australia, France, Germany and Kyrgzstan and Spain.

In a paper published in the journal Acta Palaeontologica Polonica on 17 July 2017, Isabelle Deregnaucourt of the Centre de recherche sur la paléontologie at the Sorbonne Universités, Torsten Wappler of the Steinmann Institute at the University of Bonn, John Anderson of the Environmental Studies Institute at Witwatersrand University, and Olivier Béthoux, also of the Centre de recherche sur la paléontologie at the Sorbonne Universités, describe a new species of Triadotypomorph from the Late Triassic Molteno Formation of the Eastern Cape in South Africa.

The new species is placed in the genus Reisia, which has previously been described from France and Germany, and give the specific name rieki, in honour of Edgar Frederick Riek, who first described Insects from the Molteno Formation. The species is described from three partial wings from Kapokkraal and one from Aasvoëlberg, identified as a new species of Reisia on the basis of venietion; the pattern of venation on Insect wings being distinctive enough to classify specimens to the species level.

Triadotypid insect Reisia rieki from Carnian (Triassic) of Kapokkraal (A), (B), (D) and Aasvoëlberg (C) localities, Molteno Formation, Karoo Basin, South Africa. (A) PRE/F/17569, right wing. (B) PRE/F/16442, left wing. (C) PRE/F/10616, right wing. (D) PRE/F/17499, right wing. Deregnaucour et al. (2017).

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