pforams@mikrotax - Trilobatus quadrilobatus

Trilobatus quadrilobatus

Classification: pf_cenozoic -> Globigerinidae -> Trilobatus -> Trilobatus quadrilobatus
Sister taxa: T. sacculifer, T. quadrilobatus, T. immaturus, T. trilobus ⟩⟨ T. bisphericus, T. sicanus ⟩⟨ T. altospiralis, T. praeimmaturus, T. primordius, T. subsacculifer, T. sp.


Citation: Trilobatus quadrilobatus (d’Orbigny, 1846)
Rank: species
Basionym: Globigerina quadrilobata d’Orbigny, 1846

Taxonomic discussion:

There is little consensus on how many species to recognise within this group. In the modern ocean the sacculifer, quadrilobatus, immaturus and trilobus test morphotypes are all produced by the same species (Andre et al. 2013), and so are no longer separated by biologists. They are, however, used by palaeontologists including Spezzaferri et al. (2018) as explained below, see also Poole & Wade (2019). [editor's comment - JRY 2018]

Originally attributed to the genus Globigerina (d’Orbigny, 1846) this species was assigned to Globigerinoides by Banner and Blow (1960) because it possesses supplementary apertures. They also considered T. trilobus and T. primordius as subspecies of T. quadrilobatus.
The taxonomy of this species has been so far misinterpreted and its history is rather complicated. D’Orbigny did not designate a holotype, and the lectotype of Banner and Blow (1960) no longer exists and only drawings are available. Papp and Schmid (1985) selected a replacement lectotype from d’Orbigny’s original material from the Vienna Basin. However, their choice was not ideal as most authors (e.g., Kennett and Srinivasan, 1983) agree that the lectotype of Banner and Blow (1960) and the replacement lectotype of Papp and Schmid (1985) are not conspecific. During the revision of this species it became clear that the selection of the replacement lectotype made by Papp and Schmid (1985) is better in agreement with the original description of d’Orbigny, which implies 4 approximately equidimensional chambers in the last whorl. The replacement lectotype is presently the only existing type of this species and all other morphotypes (e.g., the lectotype of Banner and Blow 1960) should be disregarded for comparative taxonomy.
Banner and Blow (1960), Blow and Banner (1962) and Papp and Schmid (1985) related this species to the T. trilobus group. André and others (2013) demonstrated that forms similar to the lectotype selected by Banner and Blow (1960) resemble T. sacculifer without the sac-like final chamber, and that they have identical DNA and all correspond to a single biological species. The re-illustration of the neotype by Papp and Schmid (1985) and its new SEM images shows that it has a high arched aperture centered in the umbilicus and that it does not resemble a T. sacculifer without the last sac-like chamber.

The specimen described by Kennett and Srinivasan (1983) has a morphology similar to the Banner and Blow (1960) lectotype and therefore, it is a T. sacculifer without the sac-like final chamber. Therefore, their mention of the intergradation among T. immaturus, T. quadrilobatus, and T. sacculifer should be regarded as intergradation among T. immaturus, T. sacculifer without the sac-like chamber, and T. sacculifer. The specimen illustrated in Spezzaferri (1994), pl. 11, figs. 2a-c resemble a T. subsacculifer with a large primary aperture rather than T. quadrilobatus.

The wall texture of the replacement lectotype is very poorly preserved and does not clearly show the symmetrical patterns of pore and reticulation (Pl. 9.12, Figs. 1-3), therefore, Spezzaferri and others (2015) placed this species in Globigerinoides. The details of the wall textures recently made available show better the sacculifer-type wall (Pl. 9.12, Figs. 4-5), and this species is now re-attributed to Trilobatus.

Both Globigerinoides bannerblowi Popescu and G. muratai Asano are here placed in synonymy with T. quadrilobatus because their holotypes closely resemble the replacement lectotype of Papp and Schmid (1985).
[Spezzaferri et al. 2018]

Catalog entries: Globigerina quadrilobata, Globigerinoides bannerblowi, Globigerinoides muratai

Type images:

Distinguishing features:
Parent taxon (Trilobatus): Supplementary apertures and cancellate wall.
This taxon: 3½-4 globular chambers in the last whorl.

NB These concise distinguishing features statements are used in the tables of daughter-taxa to act as quick summaries of the differences between e.g. species of one genus.
They are being edited as the site is developed and comments on them are especially welcome.


Wall type: Normal perforate, spinose, sacculifer-type wall.

Morphology: Low to medium high trochospiral consisting of 3 whorls. Slightly subovate to subcircular and subtriangular in outline, 4 globular chambers in the last whorl increase slowly in size. Sutures depressed and straight to slightly curved on both sides. Umbilicus open and deep, primary aperture a moderately high umbilical arch sometimes bordered by a very thin rim. One to two small and low arched supplementary apertures may be present and are placed over the sutures. [Spezzaferri et al. 2018]

Size: Maximum diameter of holotype 0.5 mm. [Spezzaferri et al. 2018]

Character matrix
test outline:Lobatechamber arrangement:Trochospiraledge view:Equally biconvexaperture:Umbilical-extraumbilical
sp chamber shape:Globularcoiling axis:Low-moderateperiphery:N/Aaperture border:Thin lip
umb chbr shape:Globularumbilicus:Wideperiph margin shape:Broadly roundedaccessory apertures:Sutural
spiral sutures:Moderately depressedumb depth:Deepwall texture:Cancellateshell porosity:Macroperforate: >2.5µm
umbilical or test sutures:Strongly depressedfinal-whorl chambers:4.0-4.0 N.B. These characters are used for advanced search. N/A - not applicable

Biogeography and Palaeobiology

Geographic distribution: Cosmopolitan. [Spezzaferri et al. 2018]

Isotope paleobiology: Nikolaev and others (1998) identify for this species a subsurface habitat niche from 25-100 m depth for the late Miocene and from 25-75 m depth for the Pliocene. Chaisson and Ravelo (1997) described this species as a mixed-layer dweller. [Spezzaferri et al. 2018]

Phylogenetic relations: Trilobatus quadrilobatus probably evolved from T. primordius in Subzone M1a. [Spezzaferri et al. 2018]

Most likely ancestor: Trilobatus primordius - at confidence level 3 (out of 5). Data source: .

Biostratigraphic distribution

Geological Range:
Notes: Trilobatus quadrilobatus ranges from Subzone M1a to at least the Pliocene (Popescu and Cioflica, 1973; Nikolaev and others, 1998). Additional investigations are needed to clarify if this species is present until the Recent. [Spezzaferri et al. 2018]
Last occurrence (top): Extant Data source: Poole & Wade 2019
First occurrence (base): within M1a subzone (22.44-22.96Ma, base in Aquitanian stage). Data source: Spezzaferri et al. 2018

Plot of occurrence data:

Primary source for this page: Spezzaferri et al. 2018 - Olig Atlas chap.9 p.296


Asano, K. (1962). Tertiary Globigerinids from Kyushu, Japan. Science Reports of the Tohoku University, Series 2 (Geology). Special Volume 5: 49-65. gs

Banner, F. T. & Blow, W. H. (1960a). Some primary types of species belonging to the superfamily Globigerinaceae. Contributions from the Cushman Foundation for Foraminiferal Research. 11: 1-41. gs V O

Blow, W. H. & Banner, F. T. (1962). The mid-Tertiary (Upper Eocene to Aquitanian) Globigerinaceae. In, Eames, F. E., Banner, F. T., Blow, W. H. & Clarke, W. J. (eds) Fundamentals of mid-Tertiary Stratigraphical Correlation. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 61-151. gs

Bolli, H. M. & Saunders, J. B. (1985). Oligocene to Holocene low latitude planktic foraminifera. In, Bolli, H. M., Saunders, J. B. & Perch-Neilsen, K. (eds) Plankton Stratigraphy. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK 155-262. gs

Chaisson, W. P. & Ravelo, A. C. (1997). Changes in upper water-column structure at Site 925, late Miocene-Pleistocene: Planktonic foraminifer assemblage and isotopic evidence. Proceedings of the Ocean Drilling Program, Scientific Results. 154: 255-268. gs

d'Orbigny, A. (1846). Foraminiferes fossiles du bassin tertiaire de Vienne (Austriche). Gide et Companie, Paris. 1-312. gs

Kennett, J. P. & Srinivasan, M. S. (1983). Neogene Planktonic Foraminifera. Hutchinson Ross Publishing Co., Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania. 1-265. gs

Nikolaev, S. D., Oskina, N. S., Blyum, N. S. & Bubenshchikova, N. V. (1998). Neogene-Quaternary variations of the ‘Pole-Equator’ temperature gradient of the surface oceanic waters in the North Atlantic and North Pacific. Global and Planetary Change. 18: 85-11. gs

Papp, A. & Schmid, M. (1985). Die Fossilien Foraminiferen des Tertiaren Beckens von Wien. Revision der Monographie von Alcide d'Orbigny (1846). Abhandlungen der Geologischen Bundesanstalt. 37: 1-311. gs V O

Poole, C. R. & Wade, B. S. (2019). Systematic taxonomy of the Trilobatus sacculifer plexus and descendant Globigerinoidesella fistulosa (planktonic foraminifera). Journal of Systematic Palaeontology. 1-42. gs

Popescu, G. & Cioflica, G. (1973). Contribuții la microbiostratigrafia miocenului mediu din nordul Transilvaniei: Studii şi cercetări de geologie, geofizica, geografie. Studii si Cercetari de Geologie Geofizica Geografie Seria Geologie. 18: 187-218. gs

Spezzaferri, S. (1994). Planktonic foraminiferal biostratigraphy and taxonomy of the Oligocene and lower Miocene in the oceanic record. An overview. Palaeontographia Italica. 81: 1-187. gs

Spezzaferri, S. et al. (2015). Fossil and genetic evidence for the polyphyletic nature of the planktonic foraminifera "Globigerinoides", and description of the new genus Trilobatus. PLoS One. 1-20. gs V O

Spezzaferri, S., Olsson, R. K. & Hemleben, C. (2018c). Taxonomy, biostratigraphy, and phylogeny of Oligocene to Lower Miocene Globigerinoides and Trilobatus. In, Wade, B. S., Olsson, R. K., Pearson, P. N., Huber, B. T. & Berggren, W. A. (eds) Atlas of Oligocene Planktonic Foraminifera. Cushman Foundation for Foraminiferal Research, Special Publication. 46(Chap 9): 269-306. gs V O


Trilobatus quadrilobatus compiled by the pforams@mikrotax project team viewed: 20-9-2021

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