Syracosphaera tanzanensis

Classification: ntax_cenozoic -> Syracosphaerales -> Syracosphaeraceae -> Syracosphaera -> Syraco - fossil -> Syracosphaera tanzanensis
Sister taxa: N. franzii, S. clathrata, S. croatica, S. fragilis, S. horvati, S. monechiae, S. octiforma, S. oneillii, S. raffiae, S. tanzanensis, S. sp. fossil


Citation: Syracosphaera tanzanensis Bown, 2005
Rank: Species
Synonyms: Syracosphaera lamina of de Kaenel & Villa, 1996, - this species is invalid since it is a homonym of the extant species Syracosphaera lamina Lecal-Schlauder, 1951. The illustrated specimens however appear very similar to S. tanzanenis.
Taxonomic discussion: Typical Syracosphaera structure seen in SEM, and large enough to be conspicuous in LM.

Distinguishing features: Medium sized, with narrow bicyclic rim (bright inner cycle, dark outer cycle) and wide central area.

Farinacci & Howe catalog pages: S. tanzanensis * , S. lamina de Kaenel and Villa *

Morphology: Muroliths with a typical Syracosphaera structure, with a high rim, narrow radial lath cycle, broad central plate formed of fused elements and a central spine. The relatively thick and high rim produces the distinct bright cycle in XPL.

Search data:
TagsLITHS: murolith, elliptical, CA: ca_disjunct, grill, process, CROSS-POLARS: rim-bicyclic, R-prominent, T-prominent,
MetricsLith size: 4->6µm;
Data source notes: lith length from OD & illustrated specimens
The morphological data given here can be used on the advanced search page. See also these notes

Geological Range:
Last occurrence (top): within Early Miocene Sub-Epoch (15.97-23.03Ma, top in Burdigalian stage). Data source: de Kaenel & Villa 1996 (as S. lamina)
First occurrence (base): within NP16 zone (40.40-42.87Ma, base in Lutetian stage). Data source: Dunkley Jones et al., 2009

Plot of occurrence data:


Bown, P. R. & Newsam, C. (2017). Calcareous nannofossils from the Eocene North Atlantic Ocean (IODP Expedition 342 Sites U1403–1411). Journal of Nannoplankton Research. 37(1): 25-60. gs V O

Bown, P. R. (2005d). Palaeogene calcareous nannofossils from the Kilwa and Lindi areas of coastal Tanzania (Tanzania Drilling Project 2003-4). Journal of Nannoplankton Research. 27(1): 21-95. gs V O

Bown, P. R., Lees, J. A. & Young, J. R. (2017). On the Cretaceous origin of the Order Syracosphaerales and the genus Syracosphaera. Journal of Micropalaeontology. 36(2): 153-165. gs V O

de Kaenel, E. & Villa, G. (1996). Oligocene-Miocene calcareous nannofossil biostratigraphy and paleoeecology from the Iberian Abyssal Plain. Proceedings of the Ocean Drilling Program, Scientific Results. 149: 79-145. gs V O

Dunkley Jones, T., Bown, P. R. & Pearson, P. (2009). Exceptionally well preserved upper Eocene to lower Oligocene calcareous nannofossils (Prymnesiophycidae) from the Pande Formation (Kilwa Group), Tanzania. Journal of Systematic Palaeontology. 7(4): 359-411. gs

Jones, A. P. & Dunkley Jones, T. (2020). Middle Eocene to Early Oligocene calcareous nannofossils from the Nanggulan Formation, Java, Indonesia. Journal of Nannoplankton Research. 30(1): 57-79. gs V O


Syracosphaera tanzanensis compiled by Jeremy R. Young, Paul R. Bown, Jacqueline A. Lees viewed: 24-7-2021

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Short stable page link: Go to to create a permanent copy of this page - citation notes

Comments (1)

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Ines Galovic (Croatia)
The last SEM picture doesn't look like to represent diagnosed species. It is much smaller and has different developed central plate (not so wide central area) with spine.
Jeremy Young (UCL, UK)
True - and in the original publication it is labelled as S. cf. S. tanzanensis - I will move this image to Syracosphaera sp.
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