Fossil Shark Juvenile Lanarkia horrida Thelodont


An intact juvenile thelodont, Lanarkia horrida.

This proto-shark fossil is exceptionally preserved, the mouth opening and eyes are clearly visable and its tail is stunning.  This small fossil is about 3 cm long (1,3 inch). Sadly, this location is no longer accessible, so these rare and unusual fishes cannot be found any more.

Do you want an exclusive fossil that nobody else has on offer and cannot be found anymore? Buy this stunning and unique Lanarkia horrida proto-shark today!

1 in stock

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About Lanarkia horrida

Physical description

Lanarkia horrida is a small fish called a ‘thelodont’ whose body is covered with skin-teeth called denticles. These denticles have different sizes and shapes depending on their locality on and in the body. Lanarkia horrida fossils have relatively large denticles, which meant that the body was well-protected against predators. The body shape is flat and broadly resembles a modern angel shark.

Age and Distribution

Lanarkia horrida occurs in the Lower Silurian Fish Bed Formation of Scotland, which is approximately 430 million years old. Other fishes occurring at this horizon are the anaspids Lasanius problematicus and Birkenia elegans, the thelodonts Lanarkia spinulosa, Lanarkia lanceolata, and Shielia taiti, the osteostracan Ateleaspis tessellata, and the euphaneropid Ciderius cooperi. The eurypterid Lanarkopterus dolichoschelus also occurs at this fauna, as well as many enigmatic fossils like Taitia catena and Dictyocaris sp.

About the thelodonts

Evolutionary significance & taxonomy

Lanarkia horrida is a member of the Thelodonti. At the moment, little is known about thelodonts other than their scale covering. They are known from Silurian and Devonian deposits throughout the world. Most species are known from isolated scales, with only a handful represented by articulated material. Almost nothing is known about their internal anatomy. Their relationship to other groups of fishes is quite unclear, although their body shape and skin-teeth are somewhat reminiscent of sharks. This is why they are sometimes referred to as ‘proto-sharks’.

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