RARE Cretaceous Fossil Fish from Near Jerusalem

Pseudoberyx sp.

Order Clupeiformes, Family Clupeidae

Geological Time: Middle Cretaceous, Cenomanian Stage (95 million years ago B.C.)

Size (25.4 mm = 1 inch): 88 mm in length on a 125 mm by 85 mm matrix

Fossil Site: Ramallah, Near Jerusalem, Israel

PseudoberyxDescription: A rarely seen member of the Order Clupeiformes, this detailed fish is a member of the Family Clupeidae known as Pseudoberyx syriacus. As such, it is thought to have been a schooling fish. The genus died out during the Late Cretaceous, leaving no descendants. This one is shown here exactly as it had been prepared after removal from the quarry, with none of the paint commonly used to restore fin rays and other details. There appears to be a mostly digested vertebral column within the fish, most likely the remains of its last supper. While most come from nearby Lebanon, this one comes from Israel, and represents the only such example I have ever been able to secure.

click fossil pictures to enlarge

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