Redlichia Trilobite with Antenna Preserved

Redlichia sp

Trilobites Order Redlichiida, Family Redlichiidae

Geological Time: Early/Middle Cambrian

Size: 26 mm

Fossil Site: Chengjiang Biota - Guanshan Fauna, Lowermost part of Wulongqing Formation, Caijiachong Valley, Yieyatoung, Gangtoucun Village, Yunnan Province, China

Redlichia Trilobite AntennaDescription: This fine trilobite specimen comes from what has been termed the “Guanshan Fauna”, found in the Wulongqing Formation. The Guanshan Fauna shares many genera with the slightly older Chengjiang Biota, but differs at the species level. With the discovery of the Chengjiang Biota in 1984 a window on the Cambrain Explosion in China was opened. The diversity of soft-tissue fossils is astonishing: algae, medusiforms, sponges, priapulids, annelid like worms, echinoderms, arthropods (including trilobites), hemichordates, chordates, and the first agnathan fish make up just a small fraction of the total. Numerous problematic forms are known as well, some of which may have represented failed attempts at diversity that did not persist to the present day.

This trilobite is a Redlichia species, the patronymic genus of the Family Redlichiida. Trilobites from this timeframe were members of the Redlichiida, Ptychopariida, Corynexochida, and the Agnostida, with the balance of the orders appearing later in time. What is most unusual about this one is that the whip-like antenna on the right side has been preserved; the left antenna shows only a trace. This is the first example with antennal preservation I have had.

Also see: Chengjiang Biota Chengjiang Fossils

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