Article: A plant hopper (Nogodinidae) from the Upper Palaeocene of Argentina: systematics and taphonomy
A new taxon of plant hopper, Celinapterixini, is erected based on Celinapterix bellissima gen. et sp. nov. from the Upper Palaeocene Maiz Gordo Formation, north-west Argentina. Its phylogenetic relationships within the Fulgoroidea and Nogodinidae are discussed. The Danish Eocene species Hammapterix paucistrata (Henriksen) is transferred to the Nogodinidae and placed in a new genus, Henriksenopterix, based on wing-venation characters. The new plant hopper is an unusual case of articulated preservation from the Maiz Gordo Formation. The palaeoenvironment is interpreted as a carbonate mudflat subenvironment with a low flow of energy, created during a period of contraction of the lacustrine system. The plant hopper is considered to have sunk and been buried in a soupy substrate. Early fossil-diagenesis seems to have occurred over an extended period of time, because although the specimen preserves all original soft-body parts, these occur as an amorphous mass owing to tissue decomposition. The occurrence of three-dimensional preservation suggests the absence of fossil-diagenetic compression; the sediments seem to preserve more-or-less their original thickness.