reconstruction of Groenlandaspis

Groenlandaspis pennsylvanica
(groenlandaspid placoderm)

Groenlandaspis pennsylvanica is one of two new species of groenlandaspid placoderms found at Red Hill. Known from a total of 27 isolated trunk plates, it apparently was uncommon at the site. However, its remains were collected in both the Shallow Channel Margin and Floodplain Pond facies. G. pennsylvanica can readily be distinguished from its more numerous Red Hill relative, Turrisaspis elektor, by its larger body size (about 40cm vs. 20 cm) and by the longer and lower shape of its trunk shield.

G. pennsylvanica and Turrisaspis are the only two members of the Groenlandaspidae found in the Catskill Formation. Other members of this widely distributed family are known from several other localities in Euramerica and Gondwana. They first appeared in the early Devonian and extended until the uppermost Devonian or lowermost Carboniferous.

Another placoderm, Phyllolepis, has also been collected from Red Hill. You can also learn More About Placoderms.

fossil of Groenlandaspis Median dorsal plate of Groenlandaspis pennsylvanica. Specimen is about 8 cm.
Photo courtesy of Ted Daeschler, ANS.

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Long, J.A. 1995. The Rise of Fishes: 500 Million Years of Evolution. Baltimore and London: John Hopkins Univ. Press.
Scientific Papers:
Daeschler, A.C. Frumes and C.F. Mullison. 2003. "Groenlandaspid placoderm fishes from the Late Devonian of North America." Records of the Australian Mus. 55:45-60.
Image Credits:
The reconstruction of Groenlandaspis is copyrighted © 2005, Dennis C. Murphy. (See Terms of Use.)

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