Orbiculoid Brachiopod from Bear Gulch with Preserved Natural Shell

Part and Counterpart Specimen


Phylum Brachiopoda, Class Lingulata, Order Lingulida, Family Discinidae

Geological Time: Mississippian (~320 m.y.a.)

Size (25.4 mm = 1 inch): Fossil is 17 mm by 23 mm across Matrix: 35 mm by 45 mm and 50 mm by 45 mm pair

Fossil Site: Heath Shale Formation, Bear Gulch Limestone, Fergus County, Montana

Code: BGF336

Price: $50.00

orbiculoideaDescription:The Bear Gulch Limestone is a deposit of some 70 square km in extent and 30 m in depth that has been a source of one of the most diverse assemblages of fossil fish with some 110 species having been described over the past 30 years. Most were new to science, and provided a unique view of the marine environment of Mississippian times. Fine preservation of both fish and invertebrates is a hallmark of these deposits, presumably due to an anoxic depositional environment. This is aninarticulate brachiopod known as an orbiculoid. Notice the preserved original shell as well as the growth rings. The depositional environment must have been nonacidic in order for original shell to be preserved as seen here. It is well-centered on its pentagonal paired matrix, making for an interesting display specimen.

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