fossil rhizodont lobe-fin Unidentified rhizodont fossil, approximately 50 cm across.
Photo courtesy of Ted Daeschler ANS.

Red Hill Rhizodont

Several articulated specimens of a rhizodont have been recovered from the floodplain pond facies. Most vertebrate fossils from this facies consist of isolated fragments, but this lobe-fin and the numerous ray-fin, Limnomis delaneyi, are the only taxa represented by articulated specimens. Consequently, they may have been the only vertebrate residents in this habitat.

These specimens are unusual because rhizodont fossils are most frequently encountered as isolated teeth or bones. They have yet to be examined in detail, but they probably represent a new species.

Other lobefins, including an unidentified lungfish, Holoptychius sp., a juvenile rhizodont (c.f., Sauripterus), Red Hill megalichthyidid, and Hyneria lindae were also found at Red Hill. You can also learn more about lobe-fin fishes.

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Jonathan Jeffery's web site on rhizodont fishes:
Long, J.A. 1995. The Rise of Fishes: 500 Million Years of Evolution. Baltimore and London: John Hopkins Univ. Press.

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