James Lamsdell, Ph.D.
Mailing address: PO Box 208109, New Haven CT 06520-8109
Street address: 210 Whitney Ave., New Haven CT 06511
Ph.D. (2014), Geology, University of Kansas
M.Sc. (2008), Palaeobiology, University of Bristol
B.Sc. (2007), Geology with Biology, University of Birmingham
My research interests centre around exploring patterns in macroevolution and macroecology through a phylogenetic framework. My work specifically focuses on Palaeozoic arthropods, with a particular focus on aquatic chelicerates (eurypterids and xiphosurans). I have a specific interest in applying phylogenetic methodologies to fossil groups, both in regard to resolving issues of arthropod systematics and in regard to tackling broader macroevolutionary questions, especially surrounding mass extinction events. My work combines phylogenetic and morphometric analyses to quantify patterns of morphological change in response to extinction events and subsequent recoveries, and compares changes in evolutionary rates and ecological preferences to search for selective patterns across these events and subsequent recoveries. With these data I am able to explore how different evolutionary lineages respond to different extinction forcing mechanisms.
I am currently studying specimens from a series of Ordovician Lagerstätten, particularly from the Winneshiek Shale of Iowa and Fezouatta in Morocco, some of which represent the oldest known eurypterids. The Ordovician is a particularly important period of geologic time, witnessing the transition from a predominantly Cambrian-type fauna to the more typical Palaeozoic fauna. Aside from my work on eurypterids and macroevolutionary research, other research interests include: the importance of lagerstätten for informing on arthropod evolution; studying evidence for arthropod development in the fossil record and the role of heterochrony in arthropod evolution, including the importance of ontogenetic data for phylogenetic analyses and calculations of morphospace; the relationship between diversity, morphological disparity, and ecological variety; and the generality of ecological preferences across and within clades.
23. Lamsdell, J. C., Briggs, D. E. G., Liu, H. P., Witzke, B. J. & McKay, R. M. 2015 (early view). A new Ordovician arthropod from the Winneshiek Lagerstätte of Iowa reveals the ground plan of eurypterids and chasmataspidids. The Science of Nature.
22. Lamsdell, J. C., Briggs, D. E. G., Liu, H. P., Witzke, B. J. & McKay, R. M. 2015. The oldest described eurypterid: a giant Middle Ordovician (Darriwilian) megalograptid from the Winneshiek Lagerstätte of Iowa. BMC Evolutionary Biology 15 (169), 1–31.
21. McCoy, V. E., Lamsdell, J. C., Poschmann, M., Anderson, R. P. & Briggs, D. E. G. 2015. All the better to see you with: eyes and claws reveal the evolution of divergent ecological roles in giant pterygotid eurypterids. Biology Letters 11 (20150564), 1–4.
20. Lamsdell, J. C. & McKenzie, S. C. 2015 (early view). Tachypleus syriacus (Woodward) – a sexually dimorphic Cretaceous crown limulid reveals underestimated horseshoe crab divergence times. Organisms Diversity & Evolution.
19. Selden, P. A., Lamsdell, J. C. & Liu, Q. 2015 (early view). An unusual xiphosuran linking horseshoe crabs and eurypterids, from the Lower Devonian (Lochkovian) of Yunnan, China. Zoologica Scripta.
18. Lamsdell, J. C. & Selden, P. A. 2015. Phylogenetic support for the monophyly of proetide trilobites. Lethaia, 58, 375–386.
17. Marshall, D. J., Lamsdell, J. C., Shpinev, E. & Braddy, S. J. 2014. A diverse chasmataspidid (Arthropoda: Chelicerata) fauna from the Early Devonian (Lochkovian) of Siberia. Palaeontology 57, 631–655.
16. Lamsdell, J. C., Stein, M. & Selden, P. A. 2013. Kodymirus and the case for convergence of raptorial appendages in Cambrian arthropods. Naturwissenschaften 100, 811–825.
15. Lamsdell, J. C., Simonetto, L. & Selden, P. A. 2013. First eurypterid from Italy: a new species of Adelophthalmus (Chelicerata: Eurypterida) from the Upper Carboniferous of the Carnic Alps (Friuli, NE Italy). Rivista Italiana di Paleontologia e Stratigrafia 119, 147–151.
14. Lamsdell, J. C. & Selden, P. A. 2013. Babes in the wood – a unique window into sea scorpion ontogeny. BMC Evolutionary Biology 13 (98), 1–46.
13. Lamsdell, J. C., Percival, I. G. & Poschmann, M. 2013. The problematic ‘chelicerate’ Melbournopterus crossotus Caster & Kjellesvig-Waering: a case of mistaken identity. Alcheringa 37, 344–348.
12. Lamsdell, J. C., Xue, J-Z. & Selden, P. A. 2013. A horseshoe crab (Arthropoda: Chelicerata: Xiphosura) from the Lower Devonian (Lochkovian) of Yunnan, China. Geological Magazine 150, 367–370.
11. Lamsdell, J. C. 2013. Redescription of Drepanopterus pentlandicus Laurie 1892, the earliest known mycteropoid (Chelicerata: Eurypterida) from the early Silurian (Llandovery) of the Pentland Hills, Scotland. Earth and Environmental Science Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh 103, 77–103.
10. Lamsdell, J. C. 2013. Revised systematics of Palaeozoic ‘horseshoe crabs’ and the myth of monophyletic Xiphosura. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 167, 1–27.
9. Lamsdell, J. C., Hoşgör, İ. & Selden, P. A. 2013. A new Ordovician eurypterid (Arthropoda: Chelicerata) from southeast Turkey: evidence for a cryptic Ordovician record of Eurypterida. Gondwana Research 23, 354–366.
8. Dunlop, J. A. & Lamsdell, J. C. 2012. Nomenclatural notes on the eurypterid family Carcinosomatidae. Zoosystematics and Evolution 88, 19–24.
7. Lamsdell, J. C. 2011. The eurypterid Stoermeropterus conicus from the lower Silurian Pentland Hills, Scotland. Monograph of the Palaeontolographical Society, London: 1–84, pls 1–15.
6. Lomax, D. R., Lamsdell, J. C. & Ciurca Jr., S. J. 2011. A collection of eurypterids from the Silurian of Lesmahagow collected pre 1900. Geological Curator 9, 331–348.
5. Lamsdell, J. C. & Legg, D. A. 2010. An isolated pterygotid ramus (Chelicerata: Eurypterida) from the Devonian Beartooth Butte Formation, Wyoming. Journal of Paleontology 84, 1206–1208.
4. Lamsdell, J. C., Braddy, S. J., Loeffler, E. J. & Dineley, D. L. 2010. Early Devonian stylonurine eurypterids from Arctic Canada. Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences 47, 1405–1415.
3. Lamsdell, J. C., Braddy, S. J. & Tetlie, O. E. 2010. The systematics and phylogeny of the Stylonurina (Arthropoda: Chelicerata: Eurypterida). Journal of Systematic Palaeontology 8, 49–61.
2. Lamsdell, J. C. & Braddy, S. J. 2010. Cope’s Rule and Romer’s theory: Patterns of diversity and gigantism in eurypterids and Palaeozoic vertebrates. Biology Letters 6, 265–269.
1. Lamsdell, J. C., Braddy, S. J. & Tetlie, O. E. 2009. Redescription of Drepanopterus abonensis (Chelicerata: Eurypterida: Stylonurina) from the Late Devonian of Portishead, UK. Palaeontology 52, 1113–1139.