Temporal range: Cambrian Stage 3
|Kerygmachela kierkegaardi, dorsal view|
|A colourful reconstruction of Kerygmachela|
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|The Cambrian explosion|
Kerygmachela kierkegaardi was a gilled lobopod from the Buen Formation (Cambrian Stage 3) of the Sirius Passet Lagerstätte, in northern Greenland. Its anatomy strongly suggests that it, along with its relative Pambdelurion whittingtoni, was either an anomalocarid or a close relative thereof. The specific name, "kierkegaardi" honors Danish philosopher Søren Kierkegaard.
It had a pair of well-developed anterior limbs that had long spines, and terminated in long, feeler-like cerci. These limbs correspond to the traditional anterior feeding-limbs of other anomalocarids. The conical mouth opens up at the very base between these two limbs. It also had 11 pairs of lateral lobes (used in swimming), along with 11 pairs of small legs at the lobes' bases, and a posterior pair of cerci.
The spiny anterior limbs suggest that it may have been a predator; however, fossils indicate total size of approximately 175 mm and, with a relatively small mouth, indicating that it would have been restricted to very small prey.
- Budd, G. E. (1999), "The morphology and phylogenetic significance of Kerygmachela kierkegaardi Budd (Buen Formation, Lower Cambrian, N Greenland)", Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, 89 (4): 249–290, doi:10.1017/S0263593300002418
- Budd, Graham E. (1993), "A Cambrian gilled lobopod from Greenland", Nature, 364 (6439): 709–711, doi:10.1038/364709a0
- Park, Tae-Yoon S.; Kihm, Ji-Hoon; Woo, Jusun; Park, Changkun; Lee, Won Young; Smith, M. Paul; Harper, David A. T.; Young, Fletcher; Nielsen, Arne T. (2018-03-09). "Brain and eyes of Kerygmachela reveal protocerebral ancestry of the panarthropod head". Nature Communications. 9 (1). doi:10.1038/s41467-018-03464-w. ISSN 2041-1723. PMC 5844904. PMID 29523785.
- Leanchoilia guts and the interpretation of three-dimensional structures in Burgess Shale-type fossils, Paleobiology
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