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Temporal range: Late Silurian
Pharyngolepis oblonga.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Anaspida
Order: Birkeniiformes
Family: †Pharyngolepididae
Kiær 1924 corrig.
Genus: Pharyngolepis
Kiaer, 1911

Pharyngolepis is an extinct genus of primitive jawless fish that lived in the Silurian period of what is now Norway.

Pharyngolepis oblongus

Pharyngolepis had well-developed anal an caudal fins, but no paired or dorsal fins that would have helped stabilise it in the water, and so was probably a poor swimmer, remaining close to the sea bottom. The pectoral fins were instead replaced by bony spines, possibly for protection against predators, and there was a row of spines along the back. It probably scooped up food from the ocean floor.[1]


  1. ^ Palmer, D., ed. (1999). The Marshall Illustrated Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs and Prehistoric Animals. London: Marshall Editions. p. 25. ISBN 1-84028-152-9.