Annual Meeting of the Palaeontological Association

By Steven Galvin - Last update

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The 66th Annual Meeting of the Palaeontological Association will be held from 18th to 24th July 2022.

The Annual Meeting will be held at University College Cork (UCC) in Ireland, which was founded in 1845 close to the former site of the school of learning originally established by St Finbarr in 606 AD.

Annual Meeting of the Palaeontological Association

Monday 18th July: Public fossil expo

The meeting will begin with an interactive public fossil exhibition at the School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences from 16:00 – 19:00 on 18th July. The core of the exhibition will be several exhibits delivered by staff and students of the School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences at UCC. Meeting delegates are very welcome to participate in the exhibition, either by contributing to the UCC exhibits or by bringing a fossil or other prop(s) of their own. The number of delegates who can be accommodated is limited; slots will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. Interested delegates should e-mail for further details and to reserve a slot. More details of the family fossil expo are found on the page Public Engagement.

16.00 – 19.00 Family Fossil Expo. Room BB1, Butler Building, Distillery Fields campus. Delegates are free to visit the expo; pre-registration not necessary.


Monday 18th July: Royal Irish Academy Discourse Lecture

The exhibition will be followed at 20:00 by a public lecture that forms part of the Royal Irish Academy (RIA) Discourse Lecture series ( The discourses are the oldest and most renowned series of talks in Ireland, with the first discourse presented in 1786. The RIA discourses were traditionally occasions reserved for the most distinguished academics to first present and discuss new work in public, and today aim to bring thought leaders to the Academy to discuss important contemporary issues. Historical discourses of note include those by Robert Mallet on his pioneering work on earthquakes, and by Sir William Rowan Hamilton on quaternion algebra. Recent speakers include various Nobel Laureates, former president of Ireland Mary McAleese and former Secretary General of the European Commission Catherine Day.

The July lecture represents the first time that the discourses will be associated with a major scientific meeting. The discourse lecture will be delivered by Prof. Larisa de Santis from Vanderbilt University, USA, who will speak on the themes biodiversity and environmental change; an abstract is available on the page Public Engagement.

20.00 – 21.30 Royal Irish Academy Discourse Lecture: Decoding the past to conserve our future, Prof. Larisa DeSantis. Aula Maxima, Main Quad, UCC main campus. Delegates must pre-register as spaces are limited.


Tuesday 19th July: Early-career researcher event – Career Links workshop

Registration for the conference available in the 4th year Hub, Cooperage Building, North Mall campus.

There will be a full-day early-career researcher (ECR) event, “Career Links workshop”, on 19th July at the School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences. The event will run from 09:00 – 17:00 and will focus on networking. For more details, see the Early career researcher event page.


Wednesday 20th July: Workshops & lab tours

Registration will be available in Devere Hall on the first floor of Áras na Mac Léinn on main campus from 08.00 – 18.00 each day from Wednesday 20th to Friday 22nd July. On Wednesday 20th July, poster setup will be available from 08.00 – 18.00.

On the morning of 20th July delegates have the option of participating in one of several workshops held in the Áras na Mac Léinn building on main campus. Several classrooms on the second floor have been booked for the workshops from 09:00 – 12:00. Concurrent with these workshops, there will be tours of the palaeontology/taphonomy and microbeam laboratory facilities at the School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences. Places on the tour and woirkshops are limited and will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis at time of registration. Full details are as follows:

09.00 – 12.00 Statistical analysis workshop
Instructor: Soledad De Esteban-Trivigno (Transmitting Science), Béarra Meeting Room
We will review basic concepts in statistics, from hypothesis testing and falsifiability to the power of the analysis. This workshop aims to facilitate critical thinking when developing statistical analyses on paleontological data.
09.00 – 12.00 Getting funded
Instructor: Sonia Monteiro (Environmental Research Institute, UCC), Dúthalla Meeting Room
Finding and securing funding is one of the most important aspects of an academic career and also one of the most challenging. In this workshop we will cover topics such as funding strategies, what funders want, and the elements of a successful proposal.
09.00 – 12.00 Public engagement
Instructors: Dr Jess Franklin (Ireland’s Fossil Heritage, UCC) and Elspeth Sinclair (iCRAG), Muscraí Meeting Room
Many funding agencies actively encourage – if not require – researchers to engage with the public. But where do you start? In this workshop we will cover different types of public engagement, how to develop an effective public engagement strategy, and how to deal with ethical approvals, safety and evaluation.
09.00 – 12.00 Bias, discrimination and decolonizing palaeontology
Instructor: Cassius Morrison (UCL & NHM), Airdmore Meeting Room
The impact of colonization is still being felt across the world and within the field of palaeontology. Please join us to discover, engage and discuss on what can be done to remove the bias and discrimination,  how palaeontology is currently portraying a skewed narrative, the solutions to making palaeontology more equitable and the best way to decolonize palaeontology for current and future generations. Additionally, practical activities and practise will be available for all those that wish to participate to put some of the solutions and ideas discussed into action.
09.00 – 12.00 Lab tours
The laboratory tours each last approximately 1 hr 10 min and will begin at 09.00, 09.25, 09.50, 10.15 and 10.40. Participants must be pre-registered as spaces are limited; participants have been preassigned to a specific tour. The meeting point for each tour is underneath the walkway between the Butler Building and Enterprise Centre, Distillery Fields campus.


Wednesday 20th July: Symposium

In the afternoon, the Annual Symposium will run from 13:00 – 17:00 in the Boole Lecture Theatre 4, Boole Theatre Complex, main campus, with the theme “Chemical fossils”.

12.50 – 13.00 Welcome address
13.00 – 13.40 Jessica Whiteside: Ocean deoxygenation and acidification at the end-Triassic extinction the one-two punch of elevated CO2
13.40 – 14.20 Paul Ullmann: Braving the elements: taphonomic and diagenetic pathways to protein preservation
14.20 – 15.00 Christine Strullu-Derrien: Illuminating the 3D ultrastructure and chemical composition of the earliest plants and fungi
15.00 – 15.45 Tea/coffee break (Devere Hall, Áras na Mac Léinn)
15.45 – 16.25 Vivi Vajda: Biomolecular and structural analyses of fossil plants – tools for tracing survival strategies during mass extinctions
16.25- 17.05 Mike Buckley: Authenticating ancient proteins: exploring the phylogenetic potential of proteins and measures of their endogeneity
17.05 – 17.45 Farid Saleh: Chemical investigations resolve enigmatic features within Burgess Shale-type fossils


Wednesday 20th July: Ice Breaker Reception

Icebreaker reception from 17.45 to 20.00 in the Aula Maxima, Main Quad on UCC’s main campus.


Thursday 21st: Talks and posters

Thursday 21st July will feature a full day of talks and posters, followed by the Annual Address given by Prof. Daniela Schmidt from the University of Bristol, UK. The Annual Dinner will be subsidized thanks to the generosity of our sponsors. Attendance at the dinner is capped so places will be allocated at time of registration on a first-come, first-served basis. It will be held in Pairc Uí Chaoimh, a state of the art stadium with a capacity of 45,000 people and the home of Ireland’s national sports hurling and gaelic football in Cork. Delegates will be treated to a live match on the all weather pitch followed by dinner and a céilí (music and dancing). The dinner is subsidized thanks to the generosity of our sponsors; coach transport will be provided.

All talks will take place in Boole Lecture Theatre 4, Boole Theatre Complex, main campus.

Session 1

09.00 – 09.15 Pterosaur take-off: estimating launch capabilities in one of the largest flying animals
Benjamin Griffin, Elizabeth Martin-Silverstone, Rodrigo V. Pêgas, Oliver E. Demuth, Erik Meilak, Colin Palmer and Emily Rayfield
09.15 – 09.30 How to become a crab: phenotypic constraints on a recurring body plan
Joanna Wolfe, Joy C. Julius, Lauren Ballou, Javier Luque, Victoria M. Watson-Zink, Jonas Keiler, Melanie J. Hopkins, Heather D. Bracken-Grissom and Javier Ortega-Hernández
09.30 – 09.35 The oldest hurdiid radiodont in China known from complete specimens†
Dongjing Fu, Allison Daley, Melanie J. Hopkins, Xiaoya Ma, Orla Bath Enright, Harriet B. Drage, Sarah Losso, Katherine St. John and Joanna M. Wolfe
09.35 – 09.40 A novel interpretation of the Ediacaran rangeomorph Culmofrons plumosa as a reclining organism†
Giovanni Pasinetti
09.40 – 09.45 Why the eyes of phacopid trilobites look the way they do†
Brigitte Schoenemann and Euan N. K. Clarkson
09.45 – 10.00 Convergent evolution of raptorality in Telluraves
Brigit Tronrud
10.00 – 10.15 Multiple increases in atmospheric oxygen and marine productivity through the Neoproterozoic and Palaeozoic
Richard Stockey, Devon B. Cole, Una C. Farrell, SGP Trace Metal Working Group, Noah J. Planavsky and Erik A. Sperling
10.15 – 10.30 The origin of panarthropod legs
Alavya Dhungana and Martin R. Smith
10.30 – 10.35 A brief history of the “Age of Barnacles”†
Andrew Gale
10.35 – 10.40 Stratigraphic completeness in phyletic evolution: insights from astronomically paced carbonate platform successions†
Emilia Jarochowska, Niklas Hohmann, David De Vleeschouwer, Rachel Warnock, Joël Koelewijn and Peter Burgess
10.40 – 10.45 Current issues with conodont tissues: Using multi-analytical methods to unravel the conodont conundrum†
Bryan Shirley and Emilia Jarochowska
10.45 – 11.30 Tea/coffee break and posters (Devere Hall, Áras na Mac Léinn)


Session 2

11.30 – 11.45 Climatic drivers of pterosaur origins
Emma Dunne, Alexander Farnsworth, Richard Butler, Sterling Nesbitt, Nicholas Fraser, Stephen Brusatte, Daniel Lunt, Paul Valdes, Stig Walsh, Paul Barrett and Davide Foffa
11.45 – 12.00 Cambrian bivalved arthropods revisited: evolution and ecology of a disparate group
Alejandro Izquierdo Lopez and Jean-Bernard Caron
12.00 – 12.05 Documenting diagenetic alteration of an aragonitic Miocene giant clam (Tridacna sp.) with implications for Strontium Isotope Stratigraphy (SIS)†
Max Fursman, Viola Warter, Linda Marko, David Evans, Willem Renema, Dominik C. Hezel and Wolfgang Müller
12.05 – 12.10 How to build a Lagerstätte: new taphonomic and sedimentological insights into the preservation of exceptional Ediacaran fossils at Spaniard’s Bay, Newfoundland†
Christopher McKean, Rod S. Taylor and Duncan McIlroy
12.10 – 12.15 Uncovering the true diversity of the Wealden iguanodontians†
Joseph Bonsor, Susannah C. R. Maidment and Paul M. Barrett
12.15 – 12.30 Examining the morphological response of marine calcifying taxa to extreme environmental change during the Cretaceous-Paleogene mass extinction in Southern Ocean shelf, open-ocean, and deep-sea ecosystems
James Witts, Heather Birch, Amy Flower, Calum MacFie and Daniela Schmidt
12.30 – 12.45 Were there multiple bursts in the early evolution of Ichthyosauromorpha?
Benjamin Moon
12.45 – 12.50 Anatomy and phylogeny of the first macraucheniid (Mammalia: Litopterna) from the Neogene Bahía Inglesa Formation (late Miocene), Atacama Region, Northern Chile†
Hans Püschel, Jhonatan Alarcón-Muñoz, Sergio Soto-Acuña, Raúl Ugalde, Sarah Shelley and Stephen Brusatte
12.50 – 12.55 Cabinet of curiosity: A fungal community in Late Devonian Callixylon newberryi wood from the University College Dublin historical slide collection†
Carla Harper, Anne-Laure Decombeix, Thibault Durieux, Michael Krings
12.55 – 13.00 Description of Helmetia expansa and phylogenetic analyses of concilitergans†
Sarah Losso, Jean-Bernard Caron and Javier Ortega-Hernández
13.00 – 14.00 Lunch (Devere Hall, Áras na Mac Léinn)


Session 3

14.00 – 14.15 DeepDive: deep learning estimation of palaeodiversity from fossil data
Rebecca Cooper and Daniele Silvestro
14.15 – 14.30 Reviving vetulicolians: a “lost chapter” in chordate history?
Giovanni Mussini, Frankie S. Dunn and M. Paul Smith
14.30 – 14.35 The Las Hoyas (Serrania de Cuenca, Spain) fossil biases reveal a constantly changing ecosystem during the Barremian†
Hugo Martin-Abad, Candela Blanco-Moreno, Paloma Alcorlo, Zain Belaústegui, Miguel Ángel Rodríguez-Pascua, José Francisco Mediato Arribas and Ángela D. Buscalioni
14.35 – 14.40 A 300-million-year record of ecosystem change – what conodonts can tell us†
Christopher Stockey, Philip C. J. Donoghue, Duncan J. E. Murdock and Mark A. Purnell
14.40 – 14.45 Terrestrial vertebrates from Triassic caves of south-west Britain: older than we thought†
Mike Simms and Kerstin Drost
14.45 – 15.00 Paleontological heritage as a powerful resource to promote the understanding of ecology and evolution concepts at schools in a Project Based Learning initiative
Lara de la Cita García and Ángela Delgado Buscalioni
15.00 – 15.15 Increasing the equitability of data citation in palaeontology: a view to the future
Jansen Smith, Nussaïbah B. Raja, Danijela Dimitrijević, Emma M. Dunne, Laura P. A. Mulvey, Paulina Nätscher, Carl Reddin, Bryan Shirley, Rachel C. M. Warnock and Adam T. Kocsis
15.15 – 15.30 Disentangling phylogenetic and ecomorphological signal in 2D skull shape in the radiation of archosaurs
Roland Sookias, Nicole Grunstra, Anne Le Maître and Christian Foth
15.30 – 15.35 Insect decline in the last 100 million years investigated with quantitative morphology: the example of lacewing larvae†
Carolin Haug and Joachim Haug
15.35 – 15.40 Gondwanan araucariaceous genus related to Wollemia was restricted to the southern high latitudes†
Miriam Slodownik and Robert S. Hill
15.45 – 16.30 Tea/coffee break and posters (Devere Hall, Áras na Mac Léinn)


Annual Address

16.30 – 17.30 What – if anything – can palaeontology contribute to understanding our climate crisis?
Daniela SchmidtYou can find an abstract on the Annual Address and Symposium page.


Friday 22nd July: Talks and posters

Friday 22nd July will again be a full day of talks and posters.

All talks will take place in Boole Lecture Theatre 4, Boole Theatre Complex, main campus.

Session 4

09.00 – 09.15 Fossilized soft tissues from the Colli Albani: a new mode of preservation for feathers
Valentina Rossi, Dawid Iurino, Edoardo Terranova and Raffaele Sardella
09.15 – 09.30 A Cambrian tommotiid preserving soft tissues reveals the metameric ancestry of lophophorates
Jin Guo, Luke Parry, Jakob Vinther, Gregory D. Edgecombe, Fan Wei, Jun Zhao, Yang Zhao, Olivier Béthoux, Xiangtong Lei, Ailin Chen, Xianguang Hou, Taimin Chen and Peiyun Cong
09.30 – 09.45 Revising taxonomy using a collaborative tool (Xper3) with an example from Early Triassic conodonts
Lilian Lacome, Samuel Ginot and Pauline Guenser
09.45 – 10.00 A biogeographic theory of thermal habitat loss during global temperature change
Adam Tibor Kocsis, Erin E. Saupe and Carl J. Reddin
10.00 – 10.15 Estimating bite force in extinct dinosaurs using phylogenetically predicted physiological cross-sectional areas
Manabu Sakamoto
10.15 – 10.30 Rangeomorph orientations with independent current indicators demonstrate the reclining rheotropic mode of life of the Ediacaran rangeomorph taxa Fractofusus misrai, Bradgatia sp. and Pectinifrons abyssalis
Daniel Pérez Pinedo, Jenna M. Neville, Giovanni Pasinetti, Christopher McKean, Rod Taylor and Duncan McIlroy
10.30 – 10.35 Floral diversity, disparity and turnover at the Siluro-Devonian boundary: palynological evidence from the Anglo-Welsh Basin, UK†
Alex Ball, Charles H. Wellman, John B. Richardson, Stephen Stukins and Paul Kenrick
10.35 – 10.40 Variscan deformation: the driving force in bone alteration of the Jarrow tetrapods†
Aodhán Ó Gogáin, Gary O’Sullivan, Thomas Clements, Brendan Hoare, John Murray and Patrick Wyse Jackson
10.40 – 10.45 An exceptional Jurassic fern with biotic interactions from southern Sweden†
Stephen McLoughlin
10.45 – 11.30 Tea/coffee break and posters (Devere Hall, Áras na Mac Léinn)


Session 5

11.30 – 11.45 Assessing skull function in tyrannosauroids using 3D finite element analysis
Andre Rowe, Emily J. Rayfield, Michael J. Benton and Thomas E. Williamson
11.45 – 12.00 Evolutionary innovation and competitive replacement drove the rise of modern coral reefs
Joseph Flannery Sutherland, Alexander Farnsworth and Michael Benton
12.00 – 12.05 Study of decay in the branchiopod crustacean Triops in sediment using micro computed tomography†
Madeleine Waskom, Sarah R. Losso and Javier Ortega-Hernández
12.05 – 12.10 Palaeobiology’s next top model: combining evidence from morphology and stratigraphy†
Laura Mulvey, Imran A. Rahman and Rachel C.M. Warnock
12.10 – 12.15 Untangling the web of arachnid systematics: using confocal microscopy to image Devonian trigonotarbids†
Emma Jayne Long, Gregory D. Edgecombe, Xiaoya Ma and Brett Clark
12.15 – 12.30 True colours: a new model for the taphonomy of melanin chemistry and the identification of phaeomelanin in Miocene and Cretaceous fossils
Tiffany Slater, Shosuke Ito, Kazumasa Wakamatsu, Fucheng Zhang, Peter Sjövall, Martin Jarenmark, Johan Lindgren and Maria E. McNamara
12.30 – 12.45 Biogeographic observer bias: Devonian Gondwana
Elizabeth Dowding
12.45 – 12.50 Comparative taphonomy of anurans from lacustrine-hosted Cenozoic Lagerstätten†
Daniel Falk, Oliver Wings and Maria E. McNamara
12.50 – 12.55 Anatomy and phylogeny of a close relative of the chondrichthyan Cladoselache from the Devonian of Morocco†
Christian Klug, Linda Frey, Michael Coates, Merle Greif, Melina Jobbins, Alexander Pohle, Abdelouahed Lagnaoui, Wahiba Bel Haouz and Michal Ginter
12.55 – 13.00 Frontal appendages from the Fezouata Biota (Morocco) reveal high diversity and ecological adaptations in radiodonts during the Early Ordovician†
Gaëtan Potin, Pénélope Claisse, Pierre Gueriau and Allison C. Daley
13.00 – 14.00 Lunch (Devere Hall, Áras na Mac Léinn)


Session 6

14.00 – 14.15 The continental end-Permian extinction event of eastern Gondwana—a song of slime and fire
Chris Mays, Vivi Vajda, Tracy D. Frank, Christopher R. Fielding, Sam M. Slater and Stephen McLoughlin
14.15 – 14.30 Taxonomic variation in teleostean fishes from Las Hoyas (Lower Cretaceous) using shape analysis
Carla San Roman, Hugo Martín-Abad and Jesús Marugán Lobón
14.30 – 14.45 Does your data collection method matter? Investigating the differences in palaeoecological reconstructions from published and Citizen Science data
Rebecca Walley, Richard Twitchett, Jessica Whiteside and Stephen Stukins
14.45 – 15.00 Dental form and function in the early feeding diversification of dinosaurs†
Antonio Ballell Mayoral, Michael J. Benton and Emily J. Rayfield
15.00 – 15.05 Diversity of shield morphologies in crabs of the group Carcinidae – a quantitative approach†
Florian Braig and Joachim T. Haug
15.05 – 15.10 Appendicular and axial modular change reveals different routes taken by secondarily aquatic mammals and reptiles†
Kiersten Formoso, Graeme Lloyd and David Bottjer
15.10 – 15.15 Bryophytes in the fossil record: two examples from non-amber preservational contexts†
Candela Blanco Moreno, David Horcajada, Hugo Martín-Abad, Ruth A. Stockey, Gar W. Rothwell, Ángela D. Buscalioni and Alexandru M.F. Tomescu
15.15 – 16.00 Tea/coffee break and posters (Devere Hall, Áras na Mac Léinn)


Session 7

16.00 – 16.15 The role of fossil tips in inferring the tree of life
Nicolas Mongiardino Koch, Luke Parry and Russell J. Garwood
16.15 – 16.30 Putting your best foot forward: the ecology of early theropod flyers refined by their feet
Michael Pittman, Phil R. Bell, Case Vincent Miller, Nathan J. Enriquez, Xiaoli Wang, Xiaoting Zheng, Leah R. Tsang, Yuen Ting Tse, Michael Landes and Thomas G. Kaye
16.30 – 16.45 Thermal structure of Late Pliensbachian assemblages determines their response to Early Toarcian warming pulses
Carl Reddin, Jan Landwehrs, Georg Feulner, Erin Saupe, Clemens Ullmann and Martin Aberhan
16.45 – 17.00 The first Cambrian tunicate from Laurentia reveals the origins of the ascidian body plan 
Karma Nanglu, Rudy Lerosey-Aubril and Javier Ortega-Hernández
17.00 – 17.15 Associations between trilobite moulting variability and morphometry
Harriet Drage, James D. Holmes, Diego C. García-Bellido and John R. Paterson
17.15 – 17.30 The Las Hoyas (Serranía de Cuenca, Spain) fossil biases reveal a constantly changing ecosystem during the Barremian
Carlos Martinez Perez, Gisella Della Costa, Humberto Ferrón, Duncan Murdock, Paul Smith, Guillermo Albanesi and Philip C.J. Donoghue
17.30 – 17.45 Post-extinction recovery of the Phanerozoic oceans and the rise of biodiversity hotspots
Michael J. Benton, Pedro Cermeño, Carmen García-Comas, Alexandre Pohl, Simon Williams, Chhaya Chaudhary, Guillaume Le Gland, R. Dietmar Müller, Andy Ridgwell and Sergio M. Vallina


Closing business

17.45 – 18.00 Presentations from the organizing committee of PalAss 2023 (Cambridge)
18:00 Presentation of the President’s Prize and the Council Poster Prize followed by closing remarks


Saturday 23rd July and Sunday 24th July: Field-trip

A two-day post-conference field-trip will visit the Carboniferous rocks of North Clare on Ireland’s Atlantic seaboard. Delegates will visit several Lower Carboniferous (Viséan) sites in the remarkable Burren region and Upper Carboniferous (Namurian) sites along the coast, including the Cliffs of Moher. The Burren is the largest glaciokarst in Europe and is celebrated for its spectacular scenery but also its unique flora and archaeological heritage. The visually stunning Cliffs of Moher, which rise to over 200 m above sea level, are the longest sea cliffs in Europe and host internationally important seabird colonies. The fieldtrip will visit various sites of palaeontological and geomorphological interest and will include several short hikes on uneven terrain.

The trip will depart Cork at 08:00 on the 23rd, returning ca. 19:00 on the 24th. The fieldtrip fees will include overnight accommodation, transport and all meals; there will be two tiers of accommodation options (i.e. with one less expensive option). The number of participants will be limited due to coach capacity so places will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis at time of registration.

The Palaeontological Association was founded in 1957 and has become one of the world’s leading learned societies in this field. The Association is a registered charity that promotes the study of palaeontology and its allied sciences through publication of original research and field guides, sponsorship of meetings and field excursions, provision of web resources and information and a program of annual awards.

Steven Galvin

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