Eulert Ranch, Saline River valley (Cretaceous of the United States)

Also known as FHSM VP-321, Fairpoty

Where: Russell County County, Kansas (39.0° N, 99.0° W: paleocoordinates 39.7° N, 64.1° W)

• coordinate based on nearby landmark

• small collection-level geographic resolution

When: Collignoniceras woollgari ammonoid zone, Fairport Chalk Member (Carlile Shale Formation), Middle Turonian (93.5 - 89.3 Ma)

• "Middle of the Fairport Chalk Member, Carlile Shale, 12 m above the Fencepost Limestone bed, early middle Turonian (Collignoniceras woollgari Zone)" (Schumacher et al. 2013, p. 617).

•"Carpenter (1996) listed the specimen as most likely from the Jetmore or Pfeifer members of the Greenhorn Limestone. However, in November 2003, Robert Jennrich led members of the Sternberg Museum to the precise location where the specimen had been excavated more than 50 years earlier. The horizon of occurence is in the middle of the Fairport Chalk, approximately 12 m above the Fencepost Limestone bed of the Greenhorn Limestone. The upper of two thin, marly chalk beds that form Hattin's (1962) marker unit 9 lies 1 metre below the site. An external mold of Collignoniceras woollgari was collected in a gritty, resistant marl layer (marker unit 8 of Hattin, 1962) roughly 2.5 meters below the site. Large valve fragments of Inoceramus cuvieri bearing a diverse assemblage of macro-invertebrate epizoans (Hattin and Hirt, 1991) appear abundant about 2 metres above the site. The confirmed age of the specimen is early Middle Turonian" (Schumacher & Everhart 2005, p. 39).

• bed-level stratigraphic resolution

Environment/lithology: marine; lithology not reported

Size class: macrofossils

Collected by Robert Jennrich, Frank Jennrich, George F. Sternberg, and one other in 1950

Collection methods: quarrying

• FHSM, Sternberg Museum of Natural History, Fort Hays State University, Hays, Kansas, U.S.A.

•FHSM VP-321 was discovered by two brothers, Frank and Robert Jennrich, while prospecting for shark teeth near the town of Fairport in northwestern Russell County, Kansas. In the fall of 1950, the brothers led G. F. Sternberg to the discovery, and along with ranch hand Jim Rouse, the four men unearthed the skull in late October of that year (Fig. 5). Sternberg’s accession records state that the specimen is “Upper Cretaceous, likely from the Greenhorn or Graneros beds Benton horizon. The original rock was a dark shale with shark teeth, several species, fish including Portheus molussus [sic]. The specimen was graciously donated to the museum by the landowner Otto C. Eulert.” An archival letter to Eulert (November 2, 1950) indicates that Sternberg originally presumed the specimen to be a mosasaur, although museum accession records and local news coverage (Anonymous, 1951) show that he quickly amended the identification to plesiosaur. After preparing the specimen and conferring with colleagues at the 1950 Society of Vertebrate Paleontology meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico (archival letter from S. P. Welles to Sternberg, January, 1951), Sternberg labeled the specimen Brachauchenius lucasi

Primary reference: K. Carpenter. 1996. A review of short-necked plesiosaurs of the Western Interior, North America. Neues Jahrbuch fur Geologie und Palaontologie, Abhandlungen 201(2):259-287 [M. Carrano/H. Street]more details

Purpose of describing collection: taxonomic analysis

PaleoDB collection 117804: authorized by Roger Benson, entered by Roger Benson on 27.09.2011

Creative Commons license: CC BY (attribution)

Taxonomic list

Reptilia
 Sauropterygia - Pliosauridae
Megacephalosaurus eulerti n. gen. n. sp. Schumacher et al. 2013 plesiosaur
FHSM VP-321 (skull and mandibles)