A Silurian Soft-Bodied Biota

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Science  10 May 1985:
Vol. 228, Issue 4700, pp. 715-717
DOI: 10.1126/science.228.4700.715


A new Silurian (Llandoverian) biota from Wisconsin with a significant soft-bodied and lightly sclerotized component is dominated by arthropods and worms. The fauna includes the earliest well-preserved xiphosure, a possible marine uniramian, three new arthropods of uncertain affinity, and possibly the first Paleozoic leech. This may be only the second locality to yield a conodont animal. Lack of a normal shelly fauna suggests an unusual environment. The discovery adds significantly to the few such exceptionally preserved faunas known from Lower Paleozoic rocks.

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