Temporal range: Terreneuvian–mid Cambrian
Mickwitziids are a Cambrian group of shelly fossils with originally phosphatic valves, belonging to the Brachiopod stem group, and exemplified by the genus Mickwitzia – the other genera are Heliomedusa (a possible junior synonym of Mickwitzia?) and Setatella.
Punctae or tubes penetrate through multiple shell wall layers, and individual punctae often develop a single, axial phosphatic tube. The shell comprises multiple phosphatic laminae; the region closest to the edge of the shell was presumably more organic-walled than phosphatized as it tends to be more flimsily preservevd.
Members of the genus appear to share characteristic shell microstructure in common with Tommotiids such as Micrina, and like this taxon, mickwitziids may not have been able to enclose their entire body within a bivalved shell.
The shells are punctuated with inward-directed hollow cones, conceivably associated with setae – though intact setae are exceptionally preserved along the margin of mickwitziid shells yet not found emanating from the cones, which have no evidence of ever incorporating setae.
The oldest mickwitziid dates to the Terreneuvian.
- 1 Butler, A. D., Streng, M., Holmer, L. E. & Babcock, L. E. 2015 Exceptionally preserved Mickwitzia from the Indian Springs Lagerstätte (Cambrian Stage 3), Nevada. J. Paleontol. 89, 933–955. (doi:10.1017/jpa.2016.8)
- Butler, Aodhán D.; Streng, Michael; Holmer, Lars E.; Babcock, Loren E. (2016). "Exceptionally preserved Mickwitzia from the Indian Springs Lagerstätte (Cambrian Stage 3), Nevada". Journal of Paleontology. 89 (6): 933–955. doi:10.1017/jpa.2016.8.
- McMenamin, M. A. S. (1992). "Two new species of the Cambrian genus Mickwitzia". Journal of Paleontology. 66 (2): 173–182. doi:10.1017/S0022336000033680. JSTOR 1305903.
- Holmer, L. E.; Skovsted, C. B.; Williams, A. (2002). "A stem group brachiopod from the Lower Cambrian: Support for a Micrina (halkieriid) ancestry". Palaeontology. 45 (5): 875–882. doi:10.1111/1475-4983.00265.
- Devaere, Léa; Holmer, Lars; Clausen, Sébastien; Vachard, Daniel (2014). "Oldest mickwitziid brachiopod from the Terreneuvian of southern France". Acta Palaeontologica Polonica. doi:10.4202/app.00021.2013.
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