Fossil unicorn fish from Eocene period

Fossil unicorn fish from Eocene period

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Credit: GEORGE BERNARD/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Fossil fish. A fossil unicorn fish (Naso rectifrons) from the late Eocene period (55-38 million years ago). Unicorn fish are so-named because they have a sharp, poisonous blade fixed above the nose. Like the related surgeonfish, which has a razor-sharp blade on its tail, the unicorn fish uses its deadly weapon to defend itself against predators. Unicorn fish are often seen feeding on coral reefs, where hundreds group together in schools. This individual measures 8cm from head to tail, and was found in Italy.

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Keywords: acanthuridae, animal, animals, eocene, fish, fossil, fossil fish, fossil vertebrate, fossils, naso rectifrons, palaeontology, paleontology, straight-headed unicorn fish, surgeon fish, unicorn fish, vertebrates

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