Abstract

Seven asteroids are described from the Tlayua quarries (18° 35´ N - 97° 56´ W), recovered from the Middle Member of the Tlayua Formation. Tlayua quarries are 94 km southeast of Puebla and 2 km northeast of the town of Tepexi de Rodriguez in the Eastern part of central Mexico. The Middle Member is fossiliferous and composed mainly of a micritic lithographic limestone with layers having packs that consist of as much as 30 % hematite. The fossils are confined to these iron rich layers. These Middle Member are about 28 m thick. Due to the abundance, variety and conservation of its paleobiota, the Tlayua quarry is one of the most important fossiliferous localities from North America’s Cretaceous. About 5 000 samples of invertebrate and vertebrate fossils have been collected from this locality and have been studied. The seven specimens belong to the Cretaceous strata and are believed to be of Lower Cretaceous (Albian) age. The asteroids described are referred to the genus Astropecten, Plutonaster, Tamaria and Echinaster. This is the first report of Cretaceous asteroids for Mexico.

 
Keywords: Lower Cretaceous, Asteroidea, Echinodermata, Mexico.