Thelodont Fossil Fish from Scotland
Chordata, Subphylum Vertebrata, Superclass Agnatha, Group Thelodonti
Time: Upper Silurian
mm in length
Seggholm, Muikirk, Ayrshire, Scotland
Thelodontia are a group of fishes most commonly known from their
distinctive tooth-like scales. Indeed the term Thelodont, derived
from Greek, means nipple tooth. The teeth have a characteristic
of dentine. The scales even on a single specimen are quite variable.
Thelodonts are rarely found as complete specimens; those that are
show them to be flattened fish, many of which were bottom dwellers.
Recent finds of intact specimens from Canada show that thellodonts
evolved into some deep-bodied forms that swam freely in the water
column. These deep-bodied forms may have been more closely allied
with jawed fishes than their other relatives. All Thelodonts were
extinct by the Upper Devonian. This high-quality specimen exhibits
the distinctive, chracteristic scales.
fossil pictures to enlarge