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The asterostomatid echinoid Antillaster from the Paradash Group (Middle Eocene) of the Nakhichevan region of Azerbaijan


, : The asterostomatid echinoid Antillaster from the Paradash Group (Middle Eocene) of the Nakhichevan region of Azerbaijan. Records of the Western Australian Museum 21(2): 157-165

The asterostomatid echinoid Antillaster has previously been recorded only from the Caribbean region and northeastern South America. Here we report the first occurrence of this genus from outside the Americas, in the Lesser Caucasus, where it has been found in Middle Eocene sediments of the Paradash Group in the Nakhichevan region of Azerbaijan. The material is described as Antillaster bagmanovi sp. nov. It is the earliest known occurrence of the genus. Its presence in the Paratethys, in a region far removed from previous known occurrences, has significant palaeobiogeographic implications. Its disappearance from the Lesser Caucasus, but persistence in the Caribbean, may be linked to the contraction of the Tethys during the Cenozoic.

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