South China has become the most important area to establish a global stratigraphic framework of the Wuchiapingian Stage because complete Wuchiapingian sequences include the GSSPs for the base and top of the stage. As the markers of the Wuchiapingian GSSP, conodonts are the most important fossil group to establish the Wuchiapingian biostratigraphic framework. However, few documents have investigated in detail the conodont biostratigraphic succession through the entire Wuchiapingian Stage. Furthermore, the conodont taxonomy of several Wuchiapingian Clarkina species is still debated. Therefore, we here review all Wuchiapingian Clarkina species from South China and figure ontogenetic growth series from juvenile to adult individuals for each valid and important species in order to revise both Wuchiapingian conodont taxonomy and the biostratigraphic succession. Based on the Penglaitan, Dukou, and Nanjiang sections, seven conodont zones (Clarkina postbitteri postbitteri, C. dukouensis, C. asymmetrica, C. leveni, C. guangyuanensis, C. transcaucasica, and C. orientalis) are recognized. The Wuchiapingian Clarkina species lineage is also reviewed to confirm the conodont biostratigraphic framework. The Guadalupian-Lopingian boundary (GLB) interval represents a sequence boundary. The time framework of the pre-Lopingian extinction interval indicates that the beginning of the end-Guadalupian regression is in the upper part of the Jinogondolella postserrata Zone, and the beginning of the early Lopingian transgression is in the lower part of the Clarkina dukouensis Zone in South China.
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Vol. 91 • No. 6