INSTITUTO ARGENTINO DE NIVOLOGIA, GLACIOLOGIA Y CIENCIAS AMBIENTALES
Unidad Ejecutora - UE
congresos y reuniones científicas
TALAMPAYA NATIONAL PARK: TRIASSIC LIFE REFUGE
MANCUSO, ADRIANA CECILIA; ARCUCCI, ANDREA
Congreso; 4° International Palaentontological Congress; 2014
Triassic life was widely documented in the rocks of the Ischigualasto Villa-Union Basin. During the 40?s, the first palaeontologic discoveries was performed by Frenguelli, Groeber and de la Mota who conducted geological study in the area. The first paleontological studies in this Basin were about non-mammalian therapsids, published by Cabrera. Subsequently, between the end of the 50 ties to 1980 several groups of paleontologist leaded by Osvaldo Reig, Rosendo Pascual, Alfred Romer and Jose Bonaparte from different argentine and american institutions (Universidad Nacional de Tucuman, Museo de la Plata and Harvard University) performed field work and established the background knowledge about the Triassic biota and its context from the main sites of this Basin. These extraordinary discoveries captured public attention and triggered government actions that ruled about the necessity to include the palaeontological heritage in a legal setting. This process started with the creation of protected areas, first in the form of provincial parks (Talampaya provincial park and Ischigualasto provincial park). Posteriorly, Talampaya site was proposed as part of the National park system, and later, together with Ischigualasto as UNESCO World Heritage site because they include the most complete record of the Triassic biota in Gondwana. The stratigraphy of the basin include rocks of the early Triassic with a scarce palaeontological record but that document the oldest post-Permian events in the region including two completely different groups of tetrapods, basal archosaurs and different groups of therapsids. The middle Triassic biota was very well documented with the tetrapod record of Chañares Formation that comprise a low species richness and high abundance of therapsids and low abundant but with high taxonomically diverse of archosauriforms; and invertebrate and plant record from Los Rastros Formation with a excellent report of Dicroidium Flora and Ipswich Microflora. Finally, the biota of the upper Triassic was extraordinary documented in the Ischigualasto and Los Colorados Formations with the report of the oldest carnivorous and herbivorous dinosaurs like Herresaurus Eoraptor and Pisanosaurus, among others, with the top of the sequence including Zupaysaurus, Riojasaurus, Coloradia and the oldest and most complete turtle Palaeochersis talampayensis. The increasing number of researchers and tourists that visit the area every year shows that even some conservation problems persisted, the actions taken over this amazing site from different organizations were positive for the scientific aspects and for the social development of the region as well.