Superb Leanchoilia - Like Great Appendage Arthropod

Part and Counterpart Specimen

Aff Leanchoilia sp

Geological Time: Early Ordovician, Tremadocian Age, (~480 million years ago)

Size (25.4 mm = 1 inch): 22 mm long (with telson) on a 75 mm by 40 mm and 80 mm by 52 mm matrix pair

Fossil Site: Fezouata Formation, Beni Zouli, Morocco

Fossil Code: 21049

Price: Sold

Description: This unusual arthropod is most closely related to Leanchoilia. The taxon is known from a number of Early/Middle Cambrian locations such as Utah, the Burgess Shale of Canada, and the oldest being Chengjiang in China. What is unusual here is that this one is some 20-25 million years younger, and is found in the Fezouata Formation of Morocco. The location was sited near the South Pole of the time, and is thought to have been some 50-150 meters deep. Beni Zouli seems to have a number of exceptionally-preserved taxa similar to the older Cambrian sites. There are at least three different taxa seemingly related to Leanchoilia awaiting description. This specimen is a member of the “great appendage arthropods” known as the opabinids after Opabinia from the Burgess Shale Fauna. The exceptional detail of the swimming appendages are readily apparent in this fine specimen, and are indicative of the fact that this was a strong swimmer. Note that proximal end of the great appendage itself as well as a sweeping telson are preserved. I have included my daughter’s representation of a Burgess example for comparison.

Also see: Superb Diania - Like Lobopodian Fossil

Fossil Purchase

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