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Fuentes (Municipality, Castilla-La Mancha, Spain)

Last modified: 2020-02-16 by ivan sache
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Flag of Fuentes - Image by Ivan Sache, 25 June 2019

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Presentation of Fuentes

The municipality of Fuentes (454 inhabitants in 2018; 10,760 ha) is located 20 km south-east of Cuenca.
Fuentes was established after the reconquest of Cuenca by Alfonso VIII (1177); most colonists came from Extremadura. Fuentes was granted the status of villa in 1557.

Fuentes is the place of the exceptional paleontological site of Lo Hueco, which was discovered in 2007 during the cutting of a little hill due to the construction of the Madrid-Levante high-speed railway, under Cenozoic conglomerates, in Upper Cretaceous marly mudstones. This site contains an extraordinary richness and diversity of fossils that constitutes a singular accumulation not only for the Spanish record but also for the whole upper Campanian-lower Maastrichtian European palaeontological record. To date, it has provided more than 8500 macroremains, mainly of vertebrates, such as actinopterygians (lepisosteids) and teleosteans fishes, amphibians, panpleurodiran (bothremydids) and pancryptodiran turtles, squamate lizards, eusuchian crocodiles, pterosaurs, and euornithopod (rhabdodontids), theropod (mainly dromaeosaurids) and sauropod (titanosaurs, some of them with nearly complete skeletons) dinosaurs, but also of plants and invertebrates.
[F. Ortega, J.L. Sanz, F. Barroso-Barcenilla, O. Cambra-Moo, F. Escaso, M. Garcáa-Oliva, F. Marcos Fernández. 2008. El yacimiento de macrovertebrados fósiles del Cretácico Superior de "Lo Hueco" (Fuentes, Cuenca) Paleontologica Nova 8, 119-131; F. Ortega, N. Bardet, F. Barroso-Barcenilla, P.M. Callapez, O. Cambra-Moo, V. Daviero-Gómez, V. Díez Díaz, L. Domingo, A. Elvira, F. Escaso, M. García-Oliva, B. Gómez, A. Houssaye, F. Knoll, F. Marcos-Fernández, M. Martín, P. Mocho, I. Narváez, A. Pérez-García, D. Peyrot, M. Segura, H. Serrano, A. Torices, D. Vidal, J.L. Sanz. 2015. The biota of the Upper Cretaceous site of Lo Hueco (Cuenca, Spain) Journal of Iberian Geology 41, 83-99; P.M. Callapez, F. Barroso-Barcenilla, O. Cambra-Moo, M. Segura. 2013. Molluscs from the fossil site of "Lo Hueco" (Upper Cretaceous, Cuenca, Spain): Palaeoenvironmental and sequential implications Estudios Geológicos, 69, 227-238; O. Cambra-Moo, F. Barroso-Barcenilla, F. Coruña, J.M. Postigo-Mijarra. 2013. Exceptionally well-preserved vegetal remains from the Upper Cretaceous of 'Lo Hueco', Cuenca, Spain Lethaia 46, 127-140]

A set of well-preserved crocodyliform skull and lower jaw remains was assigned to a new basal eusuchian taxon, Lohuecosuchus megadontos gen. et sp. nov. Phylogenetic analysis places Lohuecosuchus in a clade exclusively composed by European Late Cretaceous taxa. This new clade, defined here as Allodaposuchidae, is recognized as the sister group of Hylaeochampsidae, also comprised of European Cretaceous forms. Allodaposuchidae and Hylaeochampsidae are grouped in a clade identified as the sister group of Crocodylia, the only crocodyliform lineage that reaches our days.
[I. Narváez, C.A. Brochu, F. Escaso, A. Pérez-García, F. Ortega. 2015. New Crocodyliforms from Southwestern Europe and definition of a diverse clade of European late Cretaceous basal eusuchians PLoS ONE 10:e0140679]

Lo Hueco yielded remains of titanosaurs, the only sauropod dinosaurs that bore osteoderms (dermal armors). A new species was delimited and named to Lohuecotitan pandafilandi, a tribute to Pandafilando, a "character" of Cervantes' "Don Quixote". Pandafilando is part of the story told by Princess Micomicona / Dorotea in Chapters XXIX-XXX of Book I: "But all this, he declared, did not so much grieve or distress him as his certain knowledge that a prodigious giant, the lord of a great island close to our kingdom, Pandafilando of the Scowl by name - for it is averred that, though his eyes are properly placed and straight, he always looks askew as if he squinted, and this he does out of malignity, to strike fear and terror into those he looks at".
The samples gathered on the site allowed a study of the disputed function of osteoderms. Lo Hueco titanosaurs might have used their osteoderms as a source of calcium that was mobilized during oogenesis, although other hypotheses cannot be completely ruled out. The cranial anatomy of titanosaurians was also elucidated.
[D. Vidal, F. Ortega, F. Gascó, A. Serrano-Martínez, J.L. Sanz. 2017. The internal anatomy of titanosaur osteoderms from the Upper Cretaceous of Spain is compatible with a role in oogenesis Scientific Reports 7:42035; F. Knoll, R.C. Ridgely, F. Ortega, J.L. Sanz, L.M. Witmer. 2013. Neurocranial osteology and neuroanatomy of a late Cretaceous titanosaurian sauropod from Spain (Ampelosaurus sp.) PLoS ONE 8:e54991

Ivan Sache, 25 June 2019

Symbols of Fuentes

The flag of Fuentes is prescribed by an Order issued on 14 August 1997 by the Government of Castilla-La Mancha and published on 11 September 1997 in the official gazette of Castilla-La Mancha, No. 41, p. 4,933 (text).
The flag is described as follows:

Flag: Rectangular panel, in proportions 2:3, horizontally divided in the middle, the upper part, blue, and the lower part, green. Charged in the center with the crowned coat of arms of the municipality.

The coat of arms of Fuentes is prescribed by an Order issued on 14 August 1997 by the Government of Castilla-La Mancha and published on 11 September 1997 in the official gazette of Castilla-La Mancha, No. 41, p. 4,933 (text).
The coat of arms is described as follows:

Coat of arms: Argent two two-storeyed founts proper pouring water azure on a base of the same. The shield surmounted by a Spanish Royal crown.

Ivan Sache, 25 June 2019