Earth and Environmental Sciences (SEES)
Dr David Martill
School of Earth & Environmental Sciences
University of Portsmouth
I am a reader in Palaeobiology. I work mainly on the Palaeobiology of Pterosaurs and exceptional preservation of fossil vertebrates. I am particularly interested in Cretaceous with projects on the dinosaurs of the Isle of Wight and the Palaeoecology of the Crato Formation, Brazil.
- Level 1: Life and Time
- Level 1: Field Mapping in Spain
- Level 1: Introduction to field techniques. Isle of Wight and Dorset
- Level 2: Vertebrate Palaeontology 1
- Level 2: Palaeotechniques and Micropalaeontology
- Level 3: Vertebrate Palaeontology and traces to humans
- Level 3: Phylogeny and Evolution
- Level 3: Fossil Lagestätten field trip to Germany
- 2000 – Present: Reader in Palaeobiology, University of Portsmouth
- 1994 - 1999: Senior Postdoctoral Research Fellow, University of Portsmouth
- 1992 – 1994: Postdoctoral Research Fellow, University of Leicester
- 1987 – 1992: Temporary Lectureship, Open University
- 1985 – 1986: Harkness Fellowship, held at the Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago, USA.
- 1985: PhD University of Leicester
- 1982: BSc Geology 1st Class (Hons) University of Leicester
- Palaeontological Association, Council Member 1996-1999
- Editor: Historical Biology, 1995-2000
- Editor: Senckenberiana Lethaea, 2006-
- Royal Society, Summer Science Exhibition Committee, 2006-
- Science Faculty Research Degree Committee, 2006-
- External examiner for PhD thesis at Leicester, Bristol and Manchester
- Supervisor for 8 internal PhD students
- Steering group member, ESF Network Fossil Insects. 1998-2000
- Palaeontological Association 1977- Present
- Society of Vertebrate Paleontology 1984 – Present
- European Association of Vertebrate Palaeontology 1997- Present
- Palaeontographical Society 1988-1992
- East Midlands Geologist ’s Association. 1994-1999
- Geologist ’ Association 1995- 2000
- Isle of Wight Geological Society 1995- present
- Leicester Literary and Philosophical Society 1979-82
- Fellow of the Linnean Society, 2000-present
The preservation of fossil soft tissues: mechanisms and palaeobiology
Work concentrating mainly on phosphatised soft tissues with high fidelity morphological resolution. Investigating chemistry and rates of process. Comparisons with recent material and actualistic experiments. Also work on preservation of organically preserved soft structures of Mesozoic marine reptiles and birds (especially feathers).
Palaeoecology of the Crato lagoon, Araripe Basin, N. E. Brazil
The Crato Formation conservation Lagerstätte is one of the most productive sites for Gonwanan insects and pterosaurs. Currently investigating the extent of fossil bearing horizons, facies relationships of its members and distribution of taxa geographically and temporally. (Co-workers: Dr Paulo Brito, Rio de Janeiro; Dr Andre Nel, Paris; Dr Dr Jason Dunlop, Berlin; Dr Gunter Bechly, Stuutgart).
Trophic structure of marine mudrock sequences
Investigating complexity of ancient food webs in palaeoenvironmnetal settings where fossil record is considered good to exceptional. Using exceptional fossils (e.g. with stomach contents preserved), comparative anatomy and paradigm approaches. Geochemistry, including trace element and stable isotope methods. Concentrating on Jurassic Oxford Clay and Kimmeridge Clay formations. (Co-worker Professor John Hudson, Leicester, Dr Phil Wilby, BGS).
The palaeobiology of pterosaurs
Investigating modes of bone growth and palaeophysiology of pterosaurs using exceptionally preserved examples from the Cretaceous Crato and Santana formations of the Araripe Basin, Brazil. Additional work using pterosaurs from northern Chile and Isle of Wight, UK. (Co-workers Dr David Unwin, Berlin, Dr Eberhard Frey Karlsruhe, Prof. Guillermo Chong Diaz, Antofagasta).
The diversity of dinosaurs
Studies concentrate on diversity and morphology of local Early Cretaceous dinosaur faunas of the English Weladen Group. Also work on South American dinosaur faunas and biogeography of Early Cretaceous dinosaur. (Co-workers – Dr Darren Naish University of Portsmouth).
Diversity of Pterosaurs
A joint project with palaeontology artist Lusi Rey detailing the diversity of the Pterosauria.
Publications Before 2006
- MARTILL, D.M. & BARKER, M. J. 2006. A paper nautilus (Octopoda, Argonauta) from the Miocene Pakhna Formation of Cyprus. Paleontology, 49, 1035-1041.
- WALSH, S.A. & MARTILL, D.M. 2006. A possible earthquake-triggered mega-boulder slide in a Chilean Mio-Pliocene marine sequence: evidence for rapid uplift and bonebed genesis. Journal of the Geological Society, London, 163, 697-705.
- MARTILL, D.M., FREY, E., BELL, C.M. & CHONG DIAZ, G. 2006. Ctenochasmatid pterosaurs from Early Cretaceous deposits in Chile. Cretaceous Research, 27, 603-610.
- MARTILL, D.M., NAISH, D. & FIELDING, S. 2006.dinosaurs in marine strata: evidence from the British Jurassic, including a review of the Allochthonous vertebrate assemblage from the marine Kimmeridge Clay Formation (Upper Jurassic) of Greta Britain. Actas se las III Jornada Internacionales Sobre Paleontoilogia de Dinosaurios y su entorno. 47- 83.
- MARTILL, D.M. & D. Naish. 2006. Cranial crest development in the azhdarchoid pterosaur Tupuxuara, with a review of the genus and tapejarid monophyly. Palaeontology 49: 925- 41.
- MARTILL. D.M., Loveridge, R. F. Ferreira Gomes de Andrade, J. A. and Herzog Cardoso, A. 2005. An unusual occurrence of amber in laminated limestones: the Crato Formation Lagerstätte (Early Cretaceous) of Brazil. Palaeontology 48: 1399-408.
- Buffetaut, E., MARTILL, D. M., Escuillie, F. 2005. Pterosaurs as part of spinosaur diet. Nature, 430, p. 33.
- Menon, F., Heads, S. W. and MARTILL, D. M. 2005. New Palaeontinidae (Insecta: Cicadomorpha) from the Lower Cretaceous Crato Formation of Brazil. Cretaceous Research, 26, 837-844.