Friday morning was the SEAVP poster session, with six different presentations. Two of the posters concerned turtles. Amy Smith did a morphometric analysis of the specimen of the sea turtle Syllomus shown above (this specimen was collected from Westmoreland County several years ago), while Dana Ehert and Jason Bourque reported on a new species of the turtle Graptemys from the Pleistocene of Florida (the modern G. flavimaculata shown below, from the Nashville Zoo).
Brian Beatty’s poster was also on Florida Pliocene fossils, specifically the fragmentary but diverse specimens found near Gainesville. These include a mixture of land mammals and reptiles, fish, and marine mammals like the platanistid dolphin Pomatodelphis (example below from the Florida Museum of Natural History):
Gretchen Gürtler and Bill Mueller reviewed specimens of phytosaurs from the Triassic of Texas, specifically the primitive genera Parasuchus and Paleorhinus (Paleorhinus bransoni from the Texas Memorial Museum shown below):
The sixth poster presentation, by Eric Standley (with a host of co-authors), was on the selection simulation developed for our evolution exhibit.
After tours of the museum’s labs and collections, we had the last technical sessions on Friday afternoon. Geb Bennett demonstrated that crocodilian teeth from the Cretaceous Hell Creek Formation show the same size distribution curve as modern alligators. Brett Woodward reviewed fish otoliths, small pieces of aragonite in the ears of fish that are involved in maintaining orientation. Bill Mueller described a diverse fauna of late Triassic reptiles and amphibians, including metoposaurs like Buettneria (this example from the Mesa Southwest Museum):
Jeremy Green presented preliminary results of a study comparing the microwear patterns on elephant and walrus tusks. As these groups use their tusks in different ways, a difference in wear patterns may indicate a difference in behavior. In the last talk, Andy Heckert, Vince Schineider, Paul Olsen, and Jonathan Mitchell described the diverse Triassic fauna from the Deep Creek Basin in North Carolina. This is rift basin similar to, but larger than, the Solite Quarry.
After a banquet on Friday evening, the conference concluded Saturday with a field trip to the Solite Quarry (photo below by Andy Heckert):