This 50 million year old, Eocene-Era fossil fish comes from
one of the world's famous Laggerstatten, the Green River Formation
in Wyoming. A small portion of the fish fossils from Green
River exhibits such fine preservation. The significant extent
of soft-tissue preservation that makes the site famous is evident
in this specimen.
Priscacara is perhaps the most popular of the Green River fish
fossils. A member of the Family Priscacaridae, the name Priscacara
means "primitive head". Shaped rather like a sunfish,
the genus sports sturdy, protective dorsal and anal spines.
Among the two species, liops and serrata, serrata is uncommon.
Liops is the smaller species, never exceeding 150 mm, whereas
serrata have been found up to 375 mm. This fine specimen shows
wonderful detail, including the impression of the body cavity.
The dark body serves as a wonderful counterpoint to the light-colored
matrix. The genus went extinct at the end of the Miocene, and
is thought by some to be related to the modern-day Cichildae.
specimen has been framed with a location label and hanger
affixed to the reverse, making an attractive display specimen
for the collector, naturalist, or fisherman, and would make
a fine gift for office or den. What makes this one unusual
is the fact that a pair of Priscacara have been preserved
in association; this piece is NOT the result of compositing.