Australia: The Land Where Time Began

A biography of the Australian continent 

Anomalocaridid Hurdia from the Burgess Shale - Its Significance for the Euarthropod Evolution

The anomalocaridids played an important role in the first complex animal marine ecosystems because of their large size, being the largest predators in the Cambrian seas, though many aspects of the morphology of anomalocaridids, their diversity, ecology and affinity have remained unclear because of the paucity of specimens. In this paper the authors describe the anomalocaridid Hurdia, based on several hundred specimens from the Burgess Shale, Canada. The general body architecture of Hurdia is similar to those of Anomalocaris and Laggania, which includes the presence of gills that are exceptionally well preserved, though they differ from those anomalocaridids by having a prominent anterior carapace structure. The diversity of known anomalocaridid morphology is amplified and clarified by these features, providing insight into the origins of important arthropod features, such as the head shield and respiratory excites.

 Sources & Further reading

  1. Daley, Allison C., Graham E. Budd, Jean-Bernard Caron, Gregory D. Edgecombe, and Desmond Collins. "The Burgess Shale Anomalocaridid Hurdia and Its Significance for Early Euarthropod Evolution." Science 323, no. 5921 (March 20, 2009 2009): 1597-600.


Author: M. H. Monroe
Last updated: 21/04/2014

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