I miss the definition of ammonite. In my opinion, many authors confuse the term "Ammonite" and "Ammonoid". Ammonoids (Ammonoidea) are large group of cephalopods including for example goniatites (Goniatitida), ceratites (Ceratitida) and ammonites (Ammonitida?).

But what do we call "true ammonite"? Is it an ammonoid with ammonitic suture? This way, many triassic, jurassic, creataceous and possibly paleogenic (danian) ammonoids could be called true ammonites, because they have complex (ammonitic) sutures.

Can you show me where ammonites are on phylogenetic tree? Can we call phylloceratina, psiloceratina, lytoceratina, ammonitina, haploceratina, perisphinctina and ancyloceratina ammonites? Can we call phylloceratina, psiloceratina, lytoceratina ammonoids, but not ammonites?


1 Answer 1


Ammonites are not strictly defined. One can reffer to ammonites as to the whole group of ammonoids (Ammonoidea, ammonites sensu latto). This is common, but not supported by most researchers. Researchers use the term "ammonoid" for paleozoic ammonoidea and "ammonite" for Jurassic and Cretaceous Ammonoidea (ammonites sensu stricto). Ammonites sensu stricto reffer to ammonoids with complex (ammonitic) sutures, which are typical for Jurassic and Cretaceous ages. However, complex ammonitic sutures are not exclusive for Jurassic and Cretaceous ammonoids. Ceratitic sutures are not exclusive for Triassic either and occur in Jurassic ammonoids, too.

So caution must be exercised when using suture lines as a means of classification. To obviate some of the problems posed by this simplistic classification, Wedekind, in 1918, introduced the terms palaeo-, meso- and neoammo-noids to classify ammonoids better.

(PDF) Goniatites. Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/262048294_Goniatites [accessed May 12 2019].


You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .