SPECTACULAR Unidentified Fish from Cretaceous Lebanon

Coryphaenidae (?)

Geological Time: Middle Cretaceous Middle Cenomanian Stage (~95 mya)

Size: 60 mm in length

Fossil Site: Lebanese Lagerstatt, Haqel, Lebanon

Coryphaenidae fossil fishDescription: While some 70 genera of fossil fish have been described from the Cretaceous sublithographic limestone deposits of Lebanon, there are several as yet unidentified taxa as well. This spectacular fish is one such. To me, it appears to have a resemblance to the modern-day dolphinfish Coryphaena hippurus. For lack of Coryphaenidae fish fossila better “pigeonhole” for the moment we will place it there. Notice the dramatic dorsal fin which extends the length of the body and the high-domed “forehead”, very reminiscent of Coryphaena. This may well be the result of convergence. The matrix has a banded appearance when seen from the edge, with several layers of alternating light and dark gray layers. The matrix split upon collection, and was repaired. There was minor involvement to the fossil itself, as shown in the accompanying photographs.

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