Unusual Aspidorhynchus Solnhofen Fossil Fish

Aspidorhynchus acutirostris

Aspidorhynchiformes, Aspidorhynchidae

Geological Time: Late Jurassic, Kimmeridgian Stage

Size: 65 mm

Fossil Site: Solnhofen Limestone, Solnhofen, Bavaria, Germany

Solnhofen Fossil FishThis is a fine example of the anterior portion of an unusual fish from the lithographic limestone deposits of Eichstatt, Germany, known as Aspidorhynchus acutirostris. The species derives its name from the sharp rostrum which it presumably used to slash sidewise at prey fish. Once its prey was stunned, the sharp teeth would have come into play. The genus became extinct in the Cretaceous, leaving no descendants. These 150 million year old deposits are famous for their exceptionally well-preserved organisms, the most famous of which are the handful of specimens of the ancient bird Archaeopteryx. Crustaceans such as this rarely remain in articulation, making this a fine piece. It is well-positioned on its large lithographic limestone matrix, a suitable representative of this remarkable largerstatt that is sure to be a welcome addition to any collection of specimens from the region.

click fossil pictures to enlarge

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