Superb Messel Fossil Bat Palaeochiropteryx

Palaeochiropteryx tupaiodon

Class Mammalia, Order Chiroptera, Suborder Microchiroptera, Family Archaeonycterididae

Geological Time: Middle Eocene

Size (25.4 mm = 1 inch): 35 mm wide, 60 mm in length on 120 mm by 110 mm resin matrix

Fossil Site: Messel Pit, Darmstadt, Germany

Code: MB2

Price: Sold

PalaeochiropteryxDescription: This is a fine example of a small species of bat from the oil shale Messel Pit deposits of Darmstadt, Germany, known as Palaeochiropteryx tupaiodon. These ~50 million year old deposits are famous for their exceptionally well-preserved organisms, some of which have the remains of their last meal preserved within, which may be the case here in the lower thoracic region around the ribs. Soft tissue preservation is a common event in material from the pit, and that is easily seen here in preservation of some wing tissue. The general Messel Fossil Bat skulldarkened outline most likely represents some of this soft tissue preservation, but some striated material cane be seen draped over the limb bones in several photos. This genus possessed relatively broad, short wings, indicative of adaptation for slow, highly maneuverable flight near the forest floor. While some features such as the skull and skeleton are primitive, the shape of the wings resembles that of the modern-day Hipposiderids which have a similar flight habit. Many of the limb bones are in Messel Fossil Bat wing membranearticulation; notice the intact foot. The skull is remarkably well preserved, with teeth intact. This bat probably was overcome by toxic gases from the lake while in low-level pursuit of flying insects.

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. This fine example is only the second I have ever been able to secure. Due to the rise of the Euro versus the Dollar, these rare specimens have gone up dramatically in price. Nevertheless, I was able to secure this one at a most reasonable price, and pass the savings on to the lucky individual or institution that secures it.

Fossils Purchase

click to enlarge

Fossil Mall Navigation:
l Home l Fossils for Sale Map l Museum and Rare Fossils l How to Buy Fossils l

Navigate by Fossil Category:
l Trilobites
l Ammonites l Fish Fossils l Invertebrate Fossils l
l Crinoids and Echinoderms l Insect Fossils l Dinosaur and Reptile Fossils l
l Cambrian Explosion Fossils l Plant Fossils l Stromatolites l
l Vertebrate Fossils l Fossil Amber l Trace & Ichnofossils l

l Fossils and Paleotological Science Information l