Marine & Environmental Sciences Faculty Proceedings, Presentations, Speeches, Lectures

The Status of the Tropical Western Atlantic Deep-Water Crinoid Fauna

Event Name/Location

2012 GSA Annual Meeting and Exposition, Charlotte, North Carolina, November 4-7, 2012

Presentation Date


Document Type

Conference Proceeding




The extant tropical western Atlantic crinoid fauna (Carolinas to Brazil) includes 50 currently accepted species-group taxa, all but 8 of which occur at depths >100 m. Taxonomic revisions of known taxa may increase this figure. Thirteen submersible dives in ten days to the previously investigated western Bahamas have recently recovered four additional taxa, including a new genus, increasing the regional fauna by 8%, and indicating that much remains to be learned. One species exhibits an important anatomical feature that may represent the foundation for future crinoid diversification. Recent submersible work off Honduras has revealed dense assemblages of the cyrtocrinids Holopus and Cyathidium, including numerous dead calices, offering an opportunity to examine changes over time. Numerous species’ bathymetric ranges and local to regional distributions vary strongly with both available substrates and hydrographic conditions.


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Additional Comments

Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs. Vol. 44, No. 7, p.499

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