Coccoderma Coelacanth from Solnhofen Lagerstätte

Coccoderma nudum

Class Sarcopterygii, Subclass, Coelacanthimorpha, Order Coelacanthiformes, Family Family Laugiidae

Geological Time: Late Jurassic, Kimmeridgian Stage


Fossil Site: Solnhofen Limestone, Malm Zeta 2, Eichstatt, Germany

Coccoderma nudumDescription: The preservation of this Coelacanth is exquisite. Coming from the world famous Solnhofen Limestone, it was formed in deposits that were a warm Jurassic salt water lagoon. Solnhofen flora and fauna are highly diverse, including soft-bodied organisms and one of the world's most famous fossils, Archaeopteryx, an Coelacanth early bird.

The Coelacanths appear in the early Devonian fossil record, and ostensibly became widely dispersed in the late Devonian and Carboniferous marine environments. They were once believed to have gone extinct at the end of the Cretaceous, until the first Latimeria Coccoderma Coelacanthspecimen was found off the east coast of South Africa in 1938. As a taxon that disappears from part of the fossil record and reappears, Coelacanths are considered a Lazarus taxon. Since 1938, Latimeria has been found in the Comoros, Kenya, Madagascar, Mozambique, and Tanzania; many consider a Coelacanths to be living fossils. The most likely reason for the gap in the fossil record from the end Cretaceous on is that Coelacanths disappeared from shallow waters. Fossil discovery and recovery in deep waters is next to impossible..

Coelacanths are lobe-finned fish having pectoral and anal fins on fleshy stalks supported by bones, and the tail or caudal fin diphycercal (divided into three lobes), the middle one of which also includes a continuation of the notochord.

Also see: Sarcoptergyii Fish Fossils Solnhofen Fossils

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