Fish otoliths from the New Zealand Tertiary

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Schwarzhans, W. 1984 Fish otoliths from the New Zealand Tertiary. Lower Hutt: New Zealand Geological Survey. Report NZGS 113 269 p.

Abstract: This report deals with the otolith-faunas of the New Zealand Tertiary from Lower Eocene to Pliocene. One hundred and sixty species are described enlarging the presently known fauna to a total of 164 species. A revision of the previously described sepecies (Frost 1924, 1928, 1933 and Stinton 1957) based on their type-material is given. Twenty-seven of their 31 valid species occur in the collections examined. Eighty species are described as new, 40 in open nomenclature and 13 as being conspecific with Recent species of the New Zealand region. Nine new fossil genera are erected. For comparison more than 200 otoliths of Recent species are figured, mostly of fishes of the Australian-New Zealand region and the deep water fauna. The systematic position of a number of both Recent and fossil fishes is discussed. Knowledge of the fossil otolith fauna is, however, still, far from complete. In the final part of the bulletin a biological reconstruction of the fauna is presented. A biostratigraphic division based on the otolith-fauna of New Zealand is established. Paleoecological and paleobiogeographical (faunal invasions to and from New Zealand; closing of the Indian waterway; opening of the Antarctic-Australian waterway) implications are discussed.