Fingerling Messel Amphiperca Fish Fossil

Amphiperca multiformis

Order Perciformes, Family Serranidae

Geological Time: Eocene (~47 Million Years Ago)

Size (25.4 mm = 1 inch): Fish fossil is 48 mm in length on a 50 mm by 85 mm resin matrix

Fossil Site: Messel Pit, Darmstadt, Germany

Fossil Code: GF68

Price: $235.00

Description: This is a fine example of fingerling of a predatory perch from the oil shale Messel Pit deposits of Darmstadt, Germany, known as Amphiperca multiformis. This one is exceptionally small, and I was able to secure it from the person who collected it in the field many years ago. Specimens have previously been found ranging from less than 10 cm to 22 cm in length. It is similar in appearance to the modern day Australian genera Macquaria and Maccullochcella, but this may only be a consequence of convergence. The Messel deposits are famous for their exceptionally well-preserved organisms, some of which have the remains of their last meal preserved within. Soft tissue preservation is a common event in material from the pit, and that is seen here in preservation of much of the specimen,. Due to this fragility of the oil shale, this specimen, like all from the locality, has been embedded in resin to allow preparation. The fossil is then flipped over and the matrix removed on the opposite side. A final coating of resin serves to preserve the specimen as seen here. See my other offerings for an example of an adult Amphiperca.

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