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A new Lyropecten (Pectinidae, Bivalvia, Mollusca) from the central California Miocene, USA


A new pectinid, Lyropecten terrysmithae n. sp., has been recognized in middle to late Miocene rock units referred to as the Monterey Formation and Santa Margarita Sandstone in the southern Salinas Valley, central California. Previously, L. terrysmithae had been identified as a flat form belonging to either L. estrellanus or L. catalinae, then more recently to Argopecten sp. The earlier assignments were based on its moderate size and a radial rib count nearly identical to these taxa. However, its hinge, flat unledged valves, looped lamellar growth lines, and hinge crura set L. terrysmithae apart from Argopecten and all species of Lyropecten. Localities where it occurs in the Salinas Valley that can be accurately dated are from the late middle to middle late Miocene “Margaritan” California provincial molluscan stage. While L. terrysmithae has been collected at other sites, those localities lack diagnostic age-specific species necessary to determine an accurate geological age and maybe older.

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