Fossil of ancient insect discovered in Shandong

A fossil of a phantaspis auritus, a type of ancient insect with a distinctive “rabbit ear” appearance that existed 500 million years ago, has been discovered in Weifang, East China’s Shandong Province, the Nanjing Institute of Geology and Paleontology announced on Monday. 

Belonging to the trilobite family, the insect was an ancient arthropod trilobite with a length of approximately 4 cm. It had a long and narrow head, which is nearly half of the total length of its dorsal shell. Its head shape looks like a pair of rabbit ears and it thrived during the Cambrian period 

“It’s distinctive because of its head shape. Most trilobites have semi-circular heads. This is more like a standard trilobite with two ears on it,” Sun Zhixin, a member of the Cambrian Explosion research team that discovered the fossil, told the Global Times on Tuesday. 

The team’s research article that explains this finding has been classified as the “editor’s choice” in the paleontology journal Acta Palaeontologica Polonica. 


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