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Ordovician period fossil trilobite

Ordovician period fossil trilobite

E442/0374

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Credit

SINCLAIR STAMMERS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SINCLAIR STAMMERS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Trilobite. Fossil trilobite, Neoasaphus Kowalewskii, from the Ordovician period (525-440 million years ago). This species has eyes on the end of long stalks (at left and upper left). Trilobites were marine arthropods which were once common throughout the world's oceans for hundreds of millions of years. Most species are thought to have lived on the sea floor in the same way as modern crabs do. Their large eyes helped them see in the darkness of the seabed. Their flexible backs allowed them to roll up into a tight ball if attacked by predators. Trilobites existed between the Cambrian and Permian periods around 542-250 million years ago.

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