فهرست مطالب

  • Volume:4 Issue: 2, Summer-Autumn 2021
  • تاریخ انتشار: 1400/11/01
  • تعداد عناوین: 38
  • Michael Benton * Pages 290-298
    The concept of the volume is to survey all the key geoparks throughout Europe in terms of their palaeontological significance. The second set of 36 articles in this Part cover the long span of geological time from the Triassic to the Quaternary, arranged in chronostratigraphic order. These document some of the most important stages in the history of life, especially focusing on life after the end-Permian mass extinction, as marine and terrestrial ecosystems rebuilt, and the ‘modern-style’ faunas and floras emerged.
    Keywords: Fossils, Paleontological heritage, UNESCO geoparks, Geoeducation, Geotourism, Geoconservation
  • Mojca Gorjup Kavčič *, Matija Križnar Pages 299-309
    Idrija UNECO Global Geopark embraces the area of Idrija Municipality in the western part of Slovenia, with an area of 294 km2. Its main town Idrija, with a famous mercury ore deposit beneath, has always been a home to several European naturalists, who explored natural features, plants, animals and fossils of the area since the beginning of mining in 1490. The ammonite Tirolites idrianus is one of the most important fossils finds in the area of the Idrija Geopark. It is named after Idrija and is an index fossil. This review focuses on the ammonite Tirolites idrianus, its type locality and stratigraphic distribution in the area of the Idrija Geopark. We also discuss means of interpreting the value and importance of this fossil to various groups of visitors, such as school groups, and groups of visitors in the Visitor Centre.
    Keywords: Geoheritage conservation, Tethys ocean, Marine fossils, Ammonite Tirolites idrianus
  • Jens Koppka * Pages 310-316
    The Triassic reptile Eifelosaurus triadicus is an icon of the Geopark Vulkaneifel and the Natural History Museum of Gerolstein (West Eifel, Rhineland Palatinate, W Germany). We explore the research history, including geoconservation aspects, and summarize current knowledge of Eifelosaurus, the sole fossil of its kind, identified as an early rhynchosaur. We discuss the local geology, stratigraphy and paleontology of the Lower Triassic in the Eifel area, with emphasis on local palaeoenvironmental conditions during deposition of the Buntsandstein. Among those are spectacular finds of numerous lycopods at Lammersdorf, only few kilometers from Oberbettingen, the source of the partial skeleton of Eifelosaurus. The famous fossil is important for local geotourism, with a hiking trail leading to the quarry where the reptile was probably discovered. Eifelosaurus is an important geoeducational topic for school groups, tourists and locals who visit exhibitions in the “Naturkundemuseum” of Gerolstein, participate in programs and guided tours through the museum.
    Keywords: Rhynchosauria, Geotourism, Triassic, Buntsandstein, UNESCO Global Geopark Vulkaneifel, Germany
  • Emmanuel Fara *, Jean David Moreau, Leo Szewczyk, Nicolas Klee, Georges Gand, Emmanuelle Vennin Pages 317-329

    The Regional Natural Park (RNP) of the Monts d'Ardèche, located in south-eastern France, became the Monts d’Ardèche UNESCO Global Geopark in September 2014. This territory possesses significant geological structures, including numerous and rich Middle-Late Triassic vertebrate tracksites. The UNESCO Global Geopark label helped to formalize a long-standing partnership for the study of this ichnological patrimony between the RNP of the Monts d'Ardèche and the University of Burgundy. Developing scientific research, protection, training and outreach are the main lines of the agreement signed in 2015. The strategy is to make a detailed and sedimentologically contextualized inventory of vertebrate tracks in the Geopark and its surroundings, establish conservation and protection priorities, set up geosites for the public and involve local people in all these activities. To date, 15 tracksites and nearly a thousand individual tracks have been inventoried. The locality “Le Sartre” stands out as being the first recognized geosite amongst the remarkable tracksites in Ardèche. After four years of scientific investigations and fitting out works, it was inaugurated in October 2020. This geosite is the first equipped locality in France to show Late Triassic dinosaur tracks and to be freely accessible to the public. This success was made possible by the intellectual, logistic and social involvement of local people throughout, by acknowledgement of these contributions, and by the capacity of all actors to collaborate efficiently with each other. With more than 1000 fossil vertebrate tracks still awaiting to be valorized in Ardèche, the designation as a UNESCO Global Geopark clearly marked a turning point from academic-only to articulated research, conservation and geotouristic initiatives involving local communities.

    Keywords: Ardèche, UNESCO Global Geopark, Ichnology, Dinosaur tracks, Triassic
  • Didier Bert, Jean Simon Pagès * Pages 330-337

    The Digne-les-Bains ammonite slab is one of the most impressive geosites of the UNESCO Global Geopark of Haute-Provence and Réserve Naturelle Nationale Géologique de Haute-Provence. Its importance rests on the number of fossils as well as their size and the high quality of the outcrop and its huge potential. It is an important subject for research in paleontology and sedimentology, as well as geoconservation. Open to the public since the 1980s it now benefits from new equipment and is ready for new adventures.

    Keywords: Geoheritage, Geoconservation, Geotourism, Fossils, Ammonites, Jurassic, France, Haute-Provence
  • Annette Schmid Röhl * Pages 338-346

    The Lower Jurassic Posidonia Shale of Southern Germany is famous for its excellently preserved fossils. First of all, the large and spectacular ichthyosaurs, pterosaurs and crocodiles impress. Fish, crinoids, ammonites and belemnites are witnesses of a very special living world in the former Posidonia Shale Sea. The rather small and inconspicuous bivalves, brachiopods and serpulids provide important clues about conditions in the ecosystem. The Posidonia Shale is one of the best-known fossil deposits in the world, and for centuries has provided scientists with an enormous wealth of information. One of the most important fossil collections is displayed in the Fossil Museum of the Werkforum in Dotternhausen. Together with the quarries (active and recultivated), the museum offers unique opportunities for scientific and geoeducational purposes.

    Keywords: Fossillagerstätte, Fossil Museum, Werkforum, Geoeducation, Geotourism, Dotternhausen, SW-Germany
  • Guenter Schweigert *, Siegfried Roth Pages 347-356
    The Nusplingen Plattenkalk is a Solnhofen-type fossil Konservat-Lagerstaette in the southwestern part of the Swabian Alb, which is scientifically exploited by the Stuttgart Natural History Museum. The Nusplingen Plattenkalk formed in a deep lagoon surrounded by islands. The highly diverse and exceptionally preserved fossil fauna and flora allow a reconstruction of the Late Jurassic marine food-web and the palaeoenvironment. The complete outcrop area is preserved as a national heritage site within the Swabian Alb Geopark. Information for the public is provided by guided tours, a geological trail with a small public sampling site and fossil exhibitions.
    Keywords: Lithographic limestones, Excavations, Geotrail, Geotourism, SW Germany
  • Antonio Goy, Soledad Ureta, Luis Carcavilla * Pages 357-367
    The Global Boundary Stratotype Section and Point (GSSP) of the Aalenian Stage (base of the Middle Jurassic), was established in Fuentelsaz (Central Spain) by the International Commission on Stratigraphy (ICS) of the International Union of Geological Sciences (IUGS) in 2000. This stratotype is one of the most important geosites of the Molina-Alto Tajo UNESCO Global Geopark. Since the declaration of the Geopark in 2015, several conservation and geotouristic initiatives have been developed for the GSSP, including its protection as Natural Monument.
    Keywords: GSSP, Jurassic, Geoheritage, Geoconservation, Geotourism
  • Bernard Riou, Mehdi Bennourine, Nicolas Klee *, Marc Lutz Pages 368-377
    Located in France on the eastern edge of the Massif Central, the Parc naturel regional des Monts d’Ardèche, inscribed as a UNESCO Global Geopark in 2014, presents great geological diversity. This includes a sedimentary boundary between the Jurassic and Cretaceous, represented by limestone and marl. Fossils of crocodilians have been discovered in these layers, highlighting the diversity of past marine environments. Sites of interest and their fossils are today protected and valorized by different public and private actors working in synergy, notably through the UNESCO Global Geopark label.
    Keywords: Geopark, Ardèche, Paleontology, Geosites, Jurassic, Marine crocodiles
  • Tobias Fischer *, Patrick Chellouche, Martin Lockley, Christian Meyer Pages 378-388
    The low level of the Jurassic sea in the area of Bad Essen-Barkhausen (Wiehen Mountains, NW Germany) was a precondition for the migration of a herd of sauropods and theropods through this coastal area about 153 million years ago. The dinosaurs left at least 11 trackways on a single fine-grained siltstone layer and several more footprints on another, younger layer. The dinosaur track layers experienced diagenesis and subsequent uplifting during the Late Cretaceous, so that they are presently exposed in sub-vertical position on a quarry rock wall. Since the discovery of the tracks in 1921, their preservation has been challenging. It has not been possible to recover the tracks because of dense jointing in the host rocks, so an in-situ fossil geosite had to be established. Because in-situ geoconservation was not common practice until the 1960s, the dinosaur tracks were initially conserved only as casts. Since the 1960s, the geosite has undergone regular protection measures, including impregnation, cement slurry injections, a drainage system and construction of a glass roof. In 1976, the quarry was granted the status of an open-air museum, which currently offers regularly updated panels, life-sized dinosaur models, guided tours, events, exhibitions and an anchor point in a hiking and cycling trail network. The conservation of the dinosaur track layers and the continuous improvement of touristic and educational programs have only been possible through decades of collaboration between the UNESCO Global Geopark TERRA.vita and its partners such as Osnabrück County, the City of Bad Essen, the Natural History Museum “Museum am Schölerberg” in Osnabrück, the Experiential Pedagogical Country Hostel Barkhausen and local associations.
    Keywords: Geoconservation, Geoheritage, In-situ fossil geosite, Dinosaur tracks, Late Jurassic, UNESCO Global Geopark TERRA.vita
  • José Angel Sánchez Fabián *, Karmah Salman, Nicolás Gallego Rojas Pages 389-397
    For many years, even before it was designated as Las Loras UNESCO Global Geopark, work was carried out to promote and protect the geological heritage of the territory. To this end, an innovative model of governance was introduced, involving local people in the management of heritage by means of citizen participation processes and Geo-volunteering. This work with the local public is enabling the collaboration of private collectors in paleontological exhibitions, geotourism activities, research and even permanent donations of collections, and land management and maintenance agreements for sites of interest. The outcome of all this work is an increase in pride and sense of belonging for the local population. Simultaneously, a program of geoeducation in schools within the Geopark has been carried out for many years with outstanding results.
    Keywords: Las Loras, Social Participation, Scientific interest, Geoconservation, Geotourism, Geoeducation
  • Alicia Serna Barquero *, Federico Olóriz Sáez, Antonio García Jiménez, Felipe González Barrionuevo Pages 398-412
    The Ammonitico Rosso is one of the most studied as well as most unusual facies developed in the Tethys Ocean, mainly during the Jurassic. This calcareous to marly-calcareous facies was typical on high seabeds seawards from the main platforms and emerged lands, sites where fine sediments accumulated discontinuously, while invertebrate animals tunneled the sea bottom during pauses in deposition. Ammonites are the most common macrofossils. Although a reddish color is characteristic, it is not exclusive. This facies occurs widely in the Sierras Subbéticas UNESCO Global Geopark (Central Betic Cordillera), where four Jurassic–Lower Cretaceous sections have been included in the List of Geological Sites of International Importance, elaborated by the Spanish Geological Survey (IGME), in the frame of the GEOSITES project, as the most representative sites for Ammonitico Rosso facies in Spain. In March 2019, a violation at La Cañada del Hornillo geosite was reported, in which blocks of Ammonitico Rosso facies several cubic meters in size were taken away. At the same time, a recent and illegal construction with the same facies was discovered. The methodology developed to determine the origin of the discovered rocks is analyzed, while a compilation of the information provided by the  Ammonitico Rosso facies studies is presented. This episode promoted a police investigation resulting in the stimulation of the geopark management to adapt its geoconservation strategy, to improve the protection of its geological heritage.
    Keywords: Geopark, Ammonitico Rosso facies, Upper Jurassic, Geoconservation, Global Geosites, Sierras Subbéticas, Geological Heritage Destruction
  • Luis Alcalá *, Alberto Cobos Pages 413-426
    Numerous Upper Jurassic–Lower Cretaceous tracksites are found in the Maestrazgo UNESCO Global Geopark; sauropod and ornithopod tracks are abundant and there are some rare stegosaurians and theropods. The Lower Cretaceous ichnite sites are dominated by ornithopod tracks, while only one Upper Cretaceous site, containing theropod tracks, has been documented. Seven of these sites are classified as Assets of Cultural Interest, the highest level of protection established in Spanish legislation, and three of them are open to visitors to promote education and geotourism.
    Keywords: Iberian Range, Dinosaurs, Ichnites, Jurassic-Cretaceous, Geotourism, Geoconservation, Aragón
  • Luis Alcalá *, Rafael Royo Torres Pages 427-439

    The current territory of the Maestrazgo UNESCO Global Geopark has provided fossils that pioneered dinosaur research in Spain. The first Spanish dinosaur, Aragosaurus ischiaticus (published in 1987), five other new genera of dinosaurs and six species were described from fossils found at Geopark sites. These are the sauropod Galveosaurus herreroi (Galvesaurus herreroi) in 2005, the iguanodontians Delapparentia turolensis in 2011 and Iguanodon galvensis in 2015, the basal ornithopod Gideonmantellia amosanjuanae in 2012, and the theropod Camarillasaurus cirugedae in 2014. This makes it one of the most relevant areas in Spain for dinosaur research and has given rise to numerous scientific publications on paleontology and the stratigraphy of the area. It has also led to the construction of several facilities to promote education and geotourism.

    Keywords: Iberian Range, Jurassic, Cretaceous, Geotourism, Geoconservation, Aragón
  • Matija Križnar, Darja Komar *, Mojca Bedjanič, Gerald Hartmann, Aljoša Šafran, Ivan Ocepek Pages 440-446
    The cross-border Geopark Karawanken/ Karavanke was established in 2011 to reflect the diverse geological composition and varied and rich natural and cultural heritage of the area. The wealth of geological heritage is reflected in numerous, already existing geosites, exceptional and unique on a global level, as well as in newly determined mineral and fossil sites. An example of the latter is the fossil site with rare Valanginian-Hauterivian heteromorphic ammonites, located in the SE part of the Karawanken/ Karavanke UNESCO Global Geopark, near Leše village above Prevalje. It is the first and newly discovered locality of heteromorphic ammonites Himantoceras trinodosum Thieuloy, 1964 and Crioceratites cf. nolani Kilian, 1910 in Slovenia. We explore the importance and potential of good cooperation between the local community, paleontologists and other geoscientists, geoheritage (paleontological heritage) conservation and UNESCO Global Geoparks.
    Keywords: Himantoceras, Crioceratites, Valanginian, Hauterivian, Geoheritage, Paleontological geosite, Karawanken, Karavanke UNESCO Global Geopark
  • Stephane Legal *, Pauline Coster Pages 447-453
    The historical stratotype of the Aptian Stage (Cretaceous) was defined in the Luberon UNESCO global geopark in the middle of the 19th century. Due to excessive urbanization launched in the early sixties, the best outcropping conditions are those found at La Tuilière, in the vicinity of Saint-Saturnin-lès-Apt. This is a privileged place, with conservation, educational and valorization measures implemented by the local authorities.
    Keywords: Aptian, Geo-education, Conservation, Stratotype
  • Asier Hilario *, Miguel Angel López Horgue, Luis Miguel Agirrezabala Pages 454-458

    The Basque Coast UNESCO Global Geopark is known worldwide for its great thickness of Upper Cretaceous and Paleocene “flysch” formations. The K/Pg and P/E boundaries are among the most popular sites, together with the IUGS-ICS designated Selandian and Thanetian global stratotypes. However, an important section of the sea cliff outcrops is formed by an older and less known Albian “black flysch”. Its tectonic and sedimentological setting is related to the opening and spreading of the floor of the Bay of Biscay, which produced important environmental changes that triggered significant ammonoid bioevents, including the occurrence of large forms. Staff at the Basque Coast UNESCO Global Geopark (UGGp) and experts from the University of the Basque Country have carried out a research and geoconservation project based on a collection of more than 150 large-sized ammonites from a single fossil collector, who had accumulated them over 40 years from a particular location in the geopark cliffs. Integrative study of the sedimentary record and morphologies of the ammonoids collected through the section documents their distribution and evolution.

    Keywords: Albian, Ammonites, ex-situ Collections, Geoconservation
  • Gabor Botfalvai *, László Makádi, Gáspár Albert, Attila Ősi Pages 459-470
    Iharkút is a Late Cretaceous (Santonian) vertebrate-bearing locality in the Bakony Mountains of western Hungary, where productive and continuous paleontological excavations have been carried out in the last twenty years. Fieldwork resulted in a very rich and diverse assemblage of terrestrial and freshwater animals, including fishes, amphibians, turtles, lizards, a freshwater mosasaur, pterosaurs, crocodilians, dinosaurs, and birds. This abundance and diversity of fossil taxa contribute to understanding of European Late Cretaceous continental vertebrate faunas. Furthermore, the site’s paleogeographic position in the western Tethyan archipelago and its Santonian mean that it fills an important gap in the Late Cretaceous record of continental vertebrates in Europe. The locality is among the geological high points of the Bakony-Balaton UNESCO Global Geopark. The fossils are internationally important, which draws the attention of both scientific and non-scientific geopark visitors.
    Keywords: Dinosaur, Geopark, Vertebrate fossils, Hungarian Dinosaur Foundation, Hungarosaurus
  • Zoltán Csiki Sava *, Alexandru Andrășanu Pages 471-491

    We review here key geological heritage elements of the Hațeg Country UNESCO Global Geopark (Southern Carpathians, western Romania) represented by latest Cretaceous continental vertebrate fossils and the sedimentary rocks enclosing them. Based on available geological and paleontological evidence, these animals were living on a tropical island. This paleogeographic setting led to the development of some unusual paleobiological traits including dwarfing of the dinosaurs, high levels of endemism, relictual characteristics, as well as uniquely derived anatomical, developmental, metabolic and/or sensory features. These unique characteristics led to the establishment of the Hațeg Country UNESCO Global Geopark over a decade ago. Recently, the Geopark implemented several projects including specific ‘Dinosaur Island’-related thematic trails and visits to key geoheritage elements. We focus on four key fossiliferous areas of the Geopark, highlighting the most important geoheritage elements of each, as well as the most significant geoproducts created based on these particular elements.

    Keywords: Cretaceous, Dinosaurs, Geopark, Geoproduct, interpretation, Romania
  • Dan Grigorescu * Pages 492-512
    In 1898, when the first dinosaur eggs were discovered in Hațeg Country (which in 2005 became part of the UNESCO Global Geopark Network), not one dinosaur egg had ever been unearthed either in the vicinity or anywhere in Romania. Twenty years later, tens of sites bearing remnants of dinosaur eggs – of which at least eight are dinosaur incubation sites – had been mapped in Hațeg Country and across Southern Transylvania as a whole. The most famous is the site at Tuștea, situated in the north-western part of the Hațeg Basin, especially well known because of the so-called “Tuștea Puzzle” whereby spherical megaloolithid eggs, almost universally seen as those of titanosaurid sauropods, are associated with hadrosaurid neonates. Tuștea is the only site in Europe to feature the remains of dinosaur neonates alongside eggs and eggshells from the Upper Cretaceous. Research here and in other areas of the Hațeg Basin highlighted the climates and sedimentology of the areas where the eggs were laid roughly 68–70 million years ago, and revealed aspects of nest building and the behavior of dinosaur neonates after hatching. The site’s scientific importance is strengthened by the great diversity of vertebrate fossil discoveries: frogs, lizards, snakes, saurischian and ornithischian dinosaurs, pterosaurs and mammals – 21 taxa in total, ranking Tuștea among the richest paleontological sites in Europe. After 24 years of continuous research primarily by professors and students from the University of Bucharest, the current owner of the land, making use of legislative inconsistencies governing the right to land ownership, forbade further investigation. During this time, the research site has degraded substantially and today requires urgent restorative and conservation measures lest it be lost forever.
    Keywords: Dinosaur eggs, Megaloolithidae, Hatchlings, Telmatosaurus, Late Cretaceous, Tuştea puzzle, Deadlocked research
  • Isabel Blasi, Xavier Pellicer *, Joan Poch, Angel Galobart Pages 513-523
    Visits to paleontological sites are one of the most popular geotourism activities, but their appeal may have drawbacks. Deciding which sites are suitable for dissemination and appropriate measures for their optimal conservation can be complex. Here, we present a geoconservation inventory of 15 Upper Cretaceous paleontological sites with dinosaur and other vertebrate remains from the Origens UNESCO Global Geopark. We provide a summary of the inventory and methodology used to characterize the geosites. We used a modified version of a geoconservation questionnaire developed by the Spanish Geological Survey that allows systematic characterization of the sites and diagnosis of their geo-touristic and educational potential, as well as their susceptibility to degradation through exposure to local environmental conditions, vandalism, and spoliation. Based on these criteria, protection and conservation measures tailored to the needs of each site are recommended. Our aim is to address questions on previously published geoconservation measures and to establish a preliminary systematic approach in the characterization, diagnosis, and protection of vertebrate paleontological sites in the Spanish Pyrenees.
    Keywords: Geoconservation, Palaeontology, Upper Cretaceous, Dinosaurs, Orígens Geopark
  • Marie Luise Frey *, Pascal Schmitz, Jutta Weber Pages 524-546

    Despite its paleontological importance, the Messel Pit was under threat to become a waste disposal site, and its eventual designation as the first Natural World Heritage UNESCO geosite in Germany followed an intense fight in which numerous principles of geoheritage and geoscience popularization were explored. The UNESCO agenda 2030 for sustainable development is the basis of current plans for the future of this extraordinary, unique geosite. The financial frame of the development and special support of the State of Hesse were crucial in establishing a visitor center. This provides a conceptual base for the Messel Pit WHS, through cooperation, exhibitions, guided tours, a variety of digital approaches in media use, leading to geotourism products and marketing activities. The challenge since March 2020 during the Sars-CoV-19 pandemic led to the development of web-based games. The new activities include a portrait series named “Deathly Paradise” and a project series of videos. Collaboration with the UNESCO Global Geopark Bergstrasse-Odenwald is realized in different projects. The importance of long-term collaboration between both UNESCO entities, the geosite and the geopark, provide an international best-practise example.

    Keywords: Geoparks, World Heritage, Geoheritage, Eocene, Geoscience popularization, Geo-education, Geotourism, Paleontology
  • Krister Smith * Pages 547-556
    Anthropogenic climate change may result, within 200 years, in warm and equable climatic conditions not experienced on Earth for tens of millions of years. Ancient ecosystems under such “greenhouse” conditions may be seen as natural experiments, and their study may help us anticipate the future, should mediation fail. The Messel Pit, a UNESCO World Heritage site in Germany, is a fossil-rich deposit laid down in the Eocene under such a greenhouse climate. Fossils of all major groups of terrestrial (including freshwater) organisms are preserved. These allow us to study their relationships, reconstruct species diversity, explore how modern groups of plants and animals evolved, and how they interacted with their environment. Examples are presented of trophic chains and reproductive behavior. Thanks to the exceptional quality and abundance of its fossils, Messel arguably offers the most detailed insight into the terrestrial ecosystem of the Eocene.
    Keywords: Messel, Eocene, Fossils, Ecosystem, Climate Change
  • Martin Koziol *, Torsten Wappler Pages 557-560
    Some of the most spectacular fossil deposits of the European Tertiary are former maars located in old volcanic field areas. The Tertiary volcanic field of the High Eifel (THV) lies between the two Quaternary volcanic fields of the West and East Eifel and extends far into the West Eifel. The Eckfelder Maar lies on the south-western edge of the THV. The extraordinarily rich fossil record documents a species-rich terrestrial flora and fauna, ranging from algae and pollen grains to coherent mammal skeletons, some with soft tissue preservation and stomach contents. Among the most significant insect finds to date is the world's first record of a fossil bird louse (order Phthiraptera). The Eckfeld louse has survived in excellent quality and, despite its small size (length 6.7 mm), shows an abundance of detail, so that it has been possible to clarify the relationships of the find and thus also the probable host range. Their present-day relatives live on shorebirds and ducklings.
    Keywords: Eocene, Eckfeld-Maar, volcanism, First fossil bird louse, Visitor management, Geotourism, Geoeducation, Geoconservation
  • Jose Canudo *, Ainara Badiola, Anchel Belmonte, Jesús Cardiel, Gloria Cuenca Bescos, Ester Diaz Berenguer, Fernando Ferratges, Miguel Moreno Azanza, Adan Perez Garcia, Manuel Perez Pueyo, Roi Silva Casal, Samuel Zamora Iranzo Pages 561-572

    The Sobrarbe-Pirineos UNESCO Global Geopark, located in the Central Pyrenees, is a region of remarkable geodiversity that includes extensive Eocene fossil-bearing sites and constitutes an important archive of paleobiodiversity. The Sobrarbe-Pirineos Geopark hosts outcrops of Eocene formations bearing an unusual abundance and diversity of fossils from marine and continental sedimentary environments, making the Sobrarbe-Pirineos Geopark a perfect window for learning about tropical ecosystems of the Eocene of southern Europe. These environments were in part tectonically controlled and offer a unique opportunity to understand how faunas changed in an active area. Here, we outline the main groups of fossils from the Sobrarbe-Pirineos Geopark, including popular examples such as the “Crocodile of Ordesa-Vio” and the sirenian Sobrarbesiren. The Geopark has been a major tool in the geoconservation of Eocene fossils.

    Keywords: Paleogene, Fossils, Pyrenees, Geoheritage
  • Thierry Pélissié *, Maëva Orliac, Pierre Olivier Antoine, Vincent Biot, Gilles Escarguel Pages 573-585
    The "phosphatières du Quercy" are karstic fillings exploited for phosphate at the end of the 19th century. They yield countless continental fossils through some 30 million years, ranging from late early Eocene to early Miocene. This exceptional paleontological series documents the ‘Grande Coupure’, a major biogeographical event involving a profound renewal of vertebrate faunas, recorded in Eurasia during the Eocene–Oligocene transition. This exceptional fossil record is key to understanding the impact of biotic and abiotic factors during this turbulent time of global change. The presence of natural mummies and the 3D preservation of numerous vertebrate skulls, as well as remains of arthropods and plants, are all attractive means to raise public awareness and promote an internationally unique geoheritage.
    Keywords: Palaeogene, Eocene–OligoceneTransition, Palaeokarst, Phosphatières, Konzentrat-Lagerstätte, Climatechange, heritage
  • Maria Cristina Bonci, Piazza Michele, Briguglio Antonino, Castello Giulia *, Caprioglio Cristina, Firpo Marco Pages 586-603
    Some of the most interesting paleontological heritage of the Liguria Region is in the Beigua UNESCO Global Geopark, in Savona Province. The Geopark is characterized by high geodiversity and strong tourist traffic, being easily accessible and already having geological and paleontological visitor centers. The geosites of Stella Santa Giustina (SSG) and Maddalena–Ponte Prina (MPP) are remarkable because they show a high diversity of both fossils and fossil-bearing lithofacies and a unique sedimentary sequence that shows different marine and transitional paleoenvironments. The fossils are very well preserved and they illuminate the geological history of the territory, referring in particular to the pre-transgressive and transgressive depositional phases of the Tertiary Piedmont Basin (TPB) on the inner margin of the Ligurian Alps chain during the Oligocene. This sequence spans almost to the end of the Oligocene, which is characterized by one of the major climatic perturbations of the Cenozoic, the Late Oligocene Warming Event (LOWE). The rock exposures reveal how diverse the fauna was just before a major community turnover took place.
    Keywords: Beigua Unesco Global Geopark, corals, Leaves, Oligocene, Tertiary Piedmont Basin
  • Pauline Coster *, Stephane Legal Pages 604-612
    The Luberon early Oligocene fossil Lagerstätte yields exquisitely well-preserved fossils as testified by the remains of articulated skeletons, skin outlines, feathers and original pigmentation patterns. The fossils include plants, insects, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals from ancient lacustrine-terrestrial ecosystems of the early Oligocene. The fossil birds are especially important, including one of the most complete specimens of trogons, an exceptionally preserved almost complete modern-type hummingbird, and one of the earliest fossil passerine birds. This was a time of warm conditions across Europe and other continents following the Eocene-Oligocene extinction event, known as the Grande Coupure. Most other Oligocene Lagerstätten worldwide are late Oligocene in age. The designation of the Luberon Regional Nature Park as a UNESCO Global Geopark has been an important step toward the protection and management of this world-class paleontological heritage along with scientific research and public education.
    Keywords: Oligocene, Lagerstätten, Luberon, Geoconservation
  • Pauline Coster *, Stephane Legal Pages 613-620
    Trace fossils represent an important component of the Earth’s heritage that provide important keys for learning about the diversity and evolution of life and environments through time. They represent a rich and fragile geoheritage that requires special geoconservation measures.The Saignon tracksite, yielding thousands of tracks attributed to mammals, is located in the heart of the Luberon UNESCO Global Geopark. A conservation approach for this exceptional site is developed while promoting education, public awareness raising, geotourism and the sustainable development of Luberon through the valorization of its natural heritage.
    Keywords: Fossil tracks, Oligocene, Geoconservation, Geoheritage, Luberon
  • Laszlo Kordos, Ildiko Meszaros, Imre Szarvas * Pages 621-634
    The transnational Novohrad-Nógrád Geopark situated in Northern Hungary and Southern Slovakia has several important Neogene fossil sites developed for geotourism. One of them is the lower Miocene paleontological locality complex at Ipolytarnóc , which has been well known since the middle of the 19th century. The site is the main geotouristic gateway to the geopark, where high-tech interpretation resources explain the geological background and fossil resources to visitors, like the rich shark-tooth-bearing intertidal sandstone, the terrestrial sandstone and rhyolite tuff containing a petrified forest and leaves, and the great number of animal tracks in a relatively small area. Since 2015, the authors have identified several thousand footprints and body impressions, including new fish, amphibian, reptile, bird, and mammal ichnotaxa, among others. Re-interpretation of the paleohabitats identifies interfingering terrestrial (Rhinoland) and intertidal pool (Crocodilia) landscapes. Similar track assemblages of similar age indicate intensive tectonic uplift and fluviatile-lacustrine sediment accumulations in the Western, Central and Eastern Paratethys forced by Neogene African plate movements.
    Keywords: Miocene, Footprints, Ipolytarnóc, Geopark, Geotourism, protection, interpretation
  • Nickolas Zouros * Pages 635-649
    The Petrified Forest of Lesvos is a Protected Natural Monument showing standing and lying petrified tree trunks, preserved by intense volcanic activity in the early Miocene. The Natural History Museum of Lesvos Petrified Forest contributed significantly to scientific research, conservation, exhibition, promotion and international recognition of the Lesvos Island UNESCO Global Geopark, a founding member of the European and the Global Geoparks Network. The Lesvos Geopark includes a variety of other volcanic, tectonic, geomorphological and coastal geosites. Lesvos Geopark works to identify, protect and promote geosites through the establishment of an interpretation infrastructure, a network of walking trails linking geosites and other sites of interest, relevant information points and eco-tourism infrastructure as well as the organization of exhibitions, scientific events and congresses as well as environmental education programs and activities.
    Keywords: Petrified forest, Paleobotany, Subtropical flora, Miocene, Geo-conservation, Geopark
  • Juan Braga *, Jose Martin, Gloria Garcia Hoyo, Lucia Tejero Trueque Pages 650-662

    Neogene sedimentary rocks cover extensive areas of the Cabo de Gata-Níjar UNESCO Global Geopark (Almería, SE Spain) although most of the outcropping rocks are Miocene volcanics. The post-volcanic sedimentary rocks include three successive Messinian coral reef units. The lower reefs consist of coral patches of varying dimensions comprising Porites and Tarbellastraea, which grew on carbonate ramps. The second unit is Porites fringing reefs that prograded from shorelines. These two lower units, early Messinian in age, were subaerially exposed and eroded during a relative sea-level drawdown, probably coeval with the Mediterranean Messinian salinity crisis. The last, late Messinian reef unit onlaps the erosion surface and consist of small Porites patches that grew dispersed in oolitic shoals together with microbial carbonates. These low-diversity reefs are the last zooxanthellate coral reefs in the Mediterranean basin and constitute the endpoint of decreasing coral diversity in the region during the Miocene due to disconnection from the Indian Ocean and global cooling. The good exposures and accessibility of these reefs in the arid landscape of the Geopark make them valuable sites for practical training in geology and paleontology at different levels and reference sites for geotourism.

    Keywords: Betic Cordillera, Zooxanthellate corals, paleogeography, Geotourism, Almería, Andalucía
  • Alfonso Arribas Herrera *, Guiomar Garrido Álvarez, José Antonio Garrido García, Francisco Juan García Tortosa, Cristobal Medialdea Pérez Pages 663-674
    Granada Geopark, covering almost all of the Guadix-Baza basin, contains an exceptional and near-continuous fossil record of the evolution of Pliocene to middle Pleistocene land mammals (5–0.5 Ma). This period covers the endorheic (closed drainage basin) stage of this geological basin and, in this chronological framework, its record of the Quaternary period, mainly the Early Pleistocene, is outstanding.
    Keywords: Quaternary, Fossil Record, Large Mammals, Guadix-Baza Basin, Granada Geopark, heritage, Geoconservation
  • Margaretha Roelfs *, Harry Huisman Pages 675-684
    The Hondsrug UNESCO Global Geopark in the northeast of the Netherlands comprises the Hondsrug-complex, a prominent range of low till ridges created by forces of moving land ice and melt water. The unusual orientations of the ridges contrast with the usual direction of ice flow, and they are separated from each other by elongate depressions. The area shows a strong cultural history, in which neanderthals encamped about 50,000 years ago, reindeer hunters roamed, and the area is famous for dozens of dolmens, burial mounds and prehistoric Celtic fields. The land ice left behind thick layers of till, scattered with billions of erratic boulders that often contain fossils. But this is a special case because the fossils are ‘hidden’ in erratic blocks, and testify to Earth history thousands of miles north in the Baltic Sea and millions of years earlier, in the Paleozoic. The Geopark can teach not only the local geological, cultural and natural heritage but also geology and life far beyond.
    Keywords: Saalian, Hondsrug-icestream, Baltics, Till, education, Geotourism
  • Silvério Figueiredo *, Luís Raposo, Maria Sousa Pages 685-693
    Foz do Enxarrique (FENX) is an open-air archaeological site from the end of the Middle Palaeolithic, with faunal remains and Mousterian industry, dated 44–32 Ka. The faunal accumulation shows evidence of human intervention. It can be seen as a paradigm for the interpretation of taphonomic processes typical of open-air sites and difficulties of interpretation. Foz do Enxarrique preserves a single archeological horizon accumulated in low energy conditions, as shown by the fragmentary bones, the predominance of remains of human-hunted animals and the presence of cut marks on some bones. The Municipality of Vila Velha de Ródão has been aware of the interest in the patrimonial value of this archaeological site. The local authorities implemented and developed a project of museology, becoming one of the few Portuguese open-air Palaeolithic sites with a musealization in situ.
    Keywords: Neanderthal man, open-air archaeological site, Pleistocene fauna, in situ musealization
  • Conny Meister *, Iris Bohnacker, Guido Bataille Pages 694-709
    The Hohle Fels Cave in the Swabian Jura is a key site of the Central European late Middle and early Upper Paleolithic. The Aurignacian deposits with more than 90,000 lithic artifacts, numerous faunal remains as well as the presence of flutes, beads and mobile art objects, give an exceptional insight into the material culture between 42,000 and 35,000 years B.P. Since 2017, the site has been part of the UNESCO World Heritage “Caves and Ice Age Art in the Swabian Jura”. Situated within the central Swabian Jura, the cave is also an integrative part of the Swabian Alb UNESCO Global Geopark. Based on cultural phenomena and geological peculiarities, the management teams of the World Heritage and the Geopark work together on the establishment of a management plan and the implementation of protective and monitoring measures. Future cooperation projects between the Geopark and World Heritage site in terms of management and development of a shared protection program are the logical consequence of the dual cave protection.
    Keywords: Geology, Archaeology, Palaeolithic stratigraphy, Cultural heritage, natural heritage, Joint protection, Monitoring program
  • Raquel Rabal Garcés, Gloria Cuenca Bescós, Jose Canudo * Pages 710-719

    The Sobrarbe-Pirineos UNESCO Global Geopark shows an extremely well-developed underground karst relief as a result of the great abundance and thickness of its limestone formations. The most important Pleistocene vertebrate site within the Geopark is Coro Tracito Cave at Tella. The fossil association is made up exclusively of bones belonging to Ursus spelaeus from the upper Pleistocene, accumulated over several thousand years. Based on scientific analysis of the fossil bones, an interesting public outreach project has been organized, involving the refurbishment of the site within the cave and the creation of a permanent exhibition called the Tella Cave Bear Museum. These two infrastructures are visited by thousands of tourists each year and constitute the main geoscientific tourist attraction of the Sobrarbe-Pirineos Geopark.

    Keywords: Pleistocene, Cave, Geopark, Cave bear, Geoconservation
  • Mahshid Pezeshki * Pages 720-721