Brachiopod fossil shell

Brachiopod fossil shell

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Credit: ALAN SIRULNIKOFF/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Brachiopod fossil shell from the 500 million-year- old Burgess Shale rock. This shell is a Micromitra burgessensis shell. This animal was a brachiopod, a marine invertebrate inhabiting a bivalve shell, similar to today's marine molluscs. The structure of brachiopod bodies were different, but they are generally still classified with the molluscs. They were common between 590 and 65 million years ago, but only a few species survive today. The Burgess Shale rocks, found in the Canadian Rocky Mountains, were formed by avalanches of fine mud that preserved soft tissue details rarely found in the fossil record. They also recorded the Cambrian Explosion, a variety of newly evolved body shapes.

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Keywords: ancient, animal, animals, brachiopod, burgess shale, cambrian explosion, canada, canadian, early, fossil invertebrate, fossilised, fossilized, fossils, invertebrates, marine, micromitra burgessensis, mollusc, old, palaeontology, paleontology, rock, shell, shelled

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