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HOGANSON, John W.*, North Dakota Geological Survey, 600 East Blvd Ave., Bismarck, ND
ERICKSON, J. Mark, Geology Department, St. Lawrence University, Canton, NY
HOLLAND, F. D., Jr., Dept. of Geology and Geol. Engineering, University of North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND


Exposures of the Late Cretaceous (Maastrichtian) Fox Hills Formation, consisting mostly of sandstones and siltstones deposited in shallow marine and lagoonal settings, are found in south-central and southwestern North Dakota. The invertebrate fauna of the Fox Hills Formation is well known but little previous work has delt with vertebrate fossils occasionally found in the formation. Feldmann and Palubnial illustrated a shark tooth and ratfish dental plate from the formation and Hoganson et al. identified the reptile fauna of the Fox Hills Formation in North Dakota. Here we discuss the rather diverse cartilaginous fish fauna of the Fox HIlls Formation in North Dakota.

Several hundred isolated teeth of cartilaginous fish were recovered from 32 locations in south-central and southwestern North Dakota (Bowman, Morton, Sioux, Emmons, and Logan Counties) by examining outcrop surfaces and by wet sieving. Twenty cartilaginous fish taxa representing 14 families have been identified from this collection (Table 1). This fauna includes the remains of Angel, Nurse, Sand Tiger, Thresher, Extinct Cow, and Leopard sharks, and Guitarfish, Extinct Sawfish, Stingrays, and Ratfish.

Collectively these cartilaginous fish taxa corraborate a Late Cretaceous age for the Fox Hills Formation in North Dakota established previously by other biochronologic indicators. They also suggest that the Late Cretaceous Fox Hills sea that covered parts of North Dakota was shallow and warm.

References Cited

Feldmann, R. M. and Palubniak, D. S. (1975) in The Cretaceous System in the Western Interior of North America, (Caldwell, W. G. E., ed.), pp 211-233. Geol. Assoc. of Canada Spec. Pap. 13.

Hoganson, J. W., Erickson, J. M. and Getman, M. R. C. (1994) J. Vert. Paleo. 14(3), p 29A. 

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Table 1. Cartilaginous fishes from the Fox Hills Formation, North Dakota
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CLASS Chondrichthyes (Cartilaginous Fishes)
  SUBCLASS Elasmobranchii (Sharks, Skates, Rays)
ORDER Hybodontiformes
      FAMILY Hybodontidae (Extinct)
        Hybodus sp.
    ORDER Squaliformes
      FAMILY Squatinidae (Angel Sharks)
        Squatina sp.
    ORDER Orectolobiformes
      FAMILY Ginglymostomatidae (Nurse Sharks)
        Ginglymostoma sp.
    ORDER Lamniformes
      FAMILY Charchariidae (Sand Tiger Sharks)
        Carcharias cf. C. tenuiplicatus (Cappetta and Case, 1975)
        Carcharias sp.

FAMILY Odontaspididae (Sand Tiger Sharks)

        Odontaspis sp.
      FAMILY Serratolamnidae (Extinct)
        Serratolamna serrata (Agassiz, 1843)
      FAMILY Alopiidae (Thresher Sharks)

Paranomotodon? sp.

      FAMILY Anacoracidae (Extinct)
        Squalicorax pristodontus (Agassiz, 1843)
    ORDER Carcharhiniformes
      FAMILY Triakidae (Leopard Sharks)

Archeotriakis sp.

        Galeorhinus? sp.
        Paleogaleus sp.
    ORDER Rajiformes

FAMILY Rhinobatidae (Guitarfish)


Rhinobatidae gen. and sp. indet.


Rhinobatoidei incertae sedis


Pseudohypolophus mcnultyi (Thurmond, 1971)

        Myledaphus bipartitus Cope, 1876
      FAMILY Sclerorhynchidae (Extinct Sawfish)
        Ischyrhiza mira Leidy, 1856
        Ischyrhiza texana Capetta and Case, 1975
        Ptychotrygon triangularis (Reuss, 1844)

ORDER Myliobatiformes


FAMILY Dasyatidae

        Dasyatis sp.
  SUBCLASS Holocephali
    ORDER Chimaeriformes (Ratfish)
      FAMILY Edaphodontidae
        Edaphodon priscus Leidy
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Updated: 17.11.06