A new aspidostomatid bryozoan from the Cape Melville Formation (Lower Miocene) of King George Island, West Antarctica
Fragments of large, bilamellar aspidostomatid bryozoan colonies occur in Early Miocene glaciomarine sedimentary sequences of the Cape Melville Formation, King George Island, South Shetland Islands, West Antarctica. Investigation of the morphological characters of this aspidostomatid cheilostome shows that it represents a new species, which is described herein as Aspidostoma melvillensis sp. n. A combination of the colony-growth pattern, inferred co-occurring biota and associated sedimentary structures indicates a comparatively deep-water, outer shelf palaeoenvironmental setting. This Miocene occurrence of Aspidostoma melvillensis sp.n. emphasizes a biogeographical link with adjacent Southern Hemisphere regions during the early Neogene.