Monday, August 22, 2011

Cyrtospirifer verneuilli

Large brachiopods are somewhat unusual with the largest fossil example being close to eight inches wide. Compared to Pelecypods, which have species that can grow up to five feet in diameter, they are typically a miniscule fauna. Thus when I come across exceptions to the rule, such as Cyrtospirifer verneuilli, I become fascinated. This species is from the Devonian (Fransian) rocks near Barvaux Sur Ourthe in Belgium. The specimen pictured below is about 3 inches wide along the hinge line.

Pedicle valve

Anterior (front)

Brachial valve

Posterior (rear)


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