Pathological Basseiarges mellishae Moroccan Trilobite

Basseiarges mellishae

Note: Per the 2013 reference below, newly erected genus is Basseiarges and the new species is mellishae after Dr Martin Basse a researcher of Devonian trilobites

Trilobites Order Lichida, Family Lichidae, Subfamily Trochurinae

Geological Time: Middle Devonian

Size: Trilobite is 30 mm long by 28 mm wide (counting spines) on a 70 mm by 50 mm matrix.

Fossil Site: Jorf, Morocco

Fossil Code: 17198

Price: Sold

Description: This unusual trilobite comes from a recently discovered location known as Jorf in Morocco, close to the site from which the polished goniatite ammonites originate. The preservation of the exoskeleton is reminiscent of them in terms of texture, unlike many trilobites from Morocco. The first examples I have come across were at the 2012 Tucson show, and were exhibited by the premier US importer of Moroccan specimens. The price was somewhat stratospheric. With the passage of time more material came to light. Here is a fine example of the taxon which has been assigned a new genus and species Basseiarges mellishae. The flattened round shape and spines along the edge of the pleural and pygidial lobes indicate to me a dweller of the seafloor. The body configuration would have served the same function as snowshoes. This one had some bad luck: notice the distortions to the right side of the pygidium. It suffered an attack at some point, and the injuries healed, leaving the evidence seen here. There are several cracks present, but the thoracic and pleural lobes line up so the changes are not due to errors in positioning during preparation.

Also see: Museum Basseiarges mellishae Moroccan trilobites.

Reference: Batalleria, 18, March 2013, pp 15-24

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