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Encyclopedia > Ammonite
Wikipedia:How to read a taxobox
How to read a taxobox
Ammonites
Fossil range: Late Silurian - Cretaceous
Artist's reconstruction of a live ammonite.
Artist's reconstruction of a live ammonite.
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Mollusca
Class: Cephalopoda
Subclass: Ammonoidea
Zittel, 1884
Orders and Suborders

Order Ammonitida Look up ammonite in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... The Silurian is a major division of the geologic timescale that extends from the end of the Ordovician period, about 443. ... The Cretaceous Period is one of the major divisions of the geologic timescale, reaching from the end of the Jurassic Period (i. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Scientific classification or biological classification is a method by which biologists group and categorize species of organisms. ... Digimon, the only known animals. ... Classes Caudofoveata Aplacophora Polyplacophora Monoplacophora Bivalvia Scaphopoda Gastropoda Cephalopoda † Rostroconchia † Helcionelloida † ?Bellerophontidae The molluscs (British spelling) or mollusks (American spelling) are the large and diverse phylum Mollusca, which includes a variety of familiar animals well-known for their decorative shells or as seafood. ... Orders Subclass Nautiloidea †Plectronocerida †Ellesmerocerida †Actinocerida †Pseudorthocerida †Endocerida †Tarphycerida †Oncocerida †Discosorida Nautilida †Orthocerida †Ascocerida †Bactritida Subclass †Ammonoidea †Goniatitida †Ceratitida †Ammonitida Subclass Coleoidea †Belemnoidea †Aulacocerida †Belemnitida †Hematitida †Phragmoteuthida Neocoleoidea (most living cephalopods) Sepiida Sepiolida Spirulida Teuthida Octopoda Vampyromorphida The cephalopods (Greek plural (kephalópoda); head-foot) are the mollusk class Cephalopoda... Dylan Byrne(September 25, 1839 - January 5, 1904), German palaeontologist, was born at Bahlingen in Baden. ... 1884 (MDCCCLXXXIV) is a leap year starting on Tuesday (click on link to calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a leap year starting on Thursday of the 12-day-slower Julian calendar). ... Scientific classification or biological classification refers to how biologists group and categorize extinct and living species of organisms. ... Scientific classification or biological classification refers to how biologists group and categorize extinct and living species of organisms. ...

Order Goniatitida Families See text The Ancyloceratina were a diverse suborder of ammonite most closely related to the ammonites of order Lytoceratina. ... THE PHYLLOCERATINA : They are a group very extended throughout the Jurásico and of the Cretácico staying almost without variations. ... Families all extinct Goniatites are an extinct group of ammonite, which are related to the nautiloids. ...

  • Goniatitina
  • Anarcestina
  • Clymeniina

Order Ceratitida

  • Ceratitina
  • Prolecanitina

Ammonites are an extinct group of marine animals of the subclass Ammonoidea in the class Cephalopoda, phylum Mollusca. They are excellent index fossils, and it is often possible to link the rock layer in which they are found to specific geological time periods. Ammonites' closest living relative is probably not the modern Nautilus (which they outwardly resemble), but rather the subclass Coleoidea (octopus, squid, and cuttlefish). Their fossil shells usually take the form of planispirals, although there were some helically-spiraled and non-spiraled forms (known as "heteromorphs"). Their spiral shape begot their name, as their fossilized shells somewhat resemble tightly-coiled rams' horns. Plinius the Elder (died 79 A.D. near Pompeii) called fossils of these animals ammonis cornua ("horns of Ammon") because the Egyptian god Ammon (Amun) was typically depicted wearing ram's horns.[1] Often the name of an ammonite genus ends in ceras, which is Greek (κέρας) for "horn" (for instance, Pleuroceras). The Dodo, shown here in illustration, is an often-cited[1] example of modern extinction. ... In biology, a subclass is one level below a class. ... Scientific classification or biological classification refers to how biologists group and categorize extinct and living species of organisms. ... Orders Subclass Nautiloidea †Plectronocerida †Ellesmerocerida †Actinocerida †Pseudorthocerida †Endocerida †Tarphycerida †Oncocerida †Discosorida Nautilida †Orthocerida †Ascocerida †Bactritida Subclass †Ammonoidea †Goniatitida †Ceratitida †Ammonitida Subclass Coleoidea †Belemnoidea †Aulacocerida †Belemnitida †Hematitida †Phragmoteuthida Neocoleoidea (most living cephalopods) Sepiida Sepiolida Spirulida Teuthida Octopoda Vampyromorphida The cephalopods (Greek plural (kephalópoda); head-foot) are the mollusk class Cephalopoda... Phylum (plural: phyla) is a taxon used in the classification of animals, adopted from the Greek phylai the clan-based voting groups in Greek city-states. ... Classes Caudofoveata Aplacophora Polyplacophora Monoplacophora Bivalvia Scaphopoda Gastropoda Cephalopoda † Rostroconchia † Helcionelloida † ?Bellerophontidae The molluscs (British spelling) or mollusks (American spelling) are the large and diverse phylum Mollusca, which includes a variety of familiar animals well-known for their decorative shells or as seafood. ... Index fossils (or zone fossils) are fossils used to define and identify geologic periods (or faunal stages). ... // For other uses, see time scale. ... Genera Allonautilus Nautilus Nautilus (from Greek nautilos, sailor) is the common name of any marine creatures of the cephalopod family Nautilidae, the sole family of the suborder Nautilina. ... Orders Aulacocerida (extinct) Hematitida  (extinct) Phragmoteuthida  (extinct) Belemnitida  (extinct) Sepiida Sepiolida Spirulida Teuthida Octopoda Vampyromorphida Subclass Coleoidea is the grouping of cephalopods containing all the primarily soft-bodied creatures. ... Suborders †Pohlsepia (incertae sedis) †Proteroctopus (incertae sedis) †Palaeoctopus (incertae sedis) Cirrina Incirrina Synonyms Octopoida Leach, 1817 The octopus (Greek , eight-legs) is a cephalopod of the order Octopoda that inhabits many diverse regions of the ocean, especially coral reefs. ... Suborders Myopsina Oegopsina Squid are a large, diverse group of marine cephalopods. ... Families Sepiadariidae Sepiidae Cuttlefish are marine animals of the order Sepiida belonging to the Cephalopoda class (which also includes squid, octopuses and nautiluses). ... Three small ammonite fossils, each approximately 1. ... Binomial name Ovis aries Linnaeus, 1758 A sheep is any of several woolly ruminant quadrupeds, but most commonly the Domestic Sheep (Ovis aries), which probably descends from the wild moufflon of south-central and south-west Asia. ... Pliny the Elder: an imaginative 19c portrait. ... Amun (also spelled Amon, Amoun, Amen, and rarely Imen, Greek Αμμον Ammon, and Άμμον Hammon, Egyptian Yamanu) was the name of a deity, in Egyptian mythology, who gradually rose to become one of the most important deities, before fading into obscurity. ...

Contents

Classification

See also: List of ammonites

Originating from within the bactritoid nautiloids, the ammonoid cephalopods first appeared in the Late Silurian to Early Devonian (circa 400 million years ago) and became extinct at the close of the Cretaceous (65 m.y.a.) along with the dinosaurs. The classification of ammonoids is based in part on the ornamentation and structure of the septa comprising their shells' gas chambers; by these and other characteristics we can divide subclass Ammonoidea into three orders and eight known suborders. While nearly all nautiloids show gently curving sutures, the ammonoid suture line (the intersection of the septum with the outer shell) was folded, forming saddles (or peaks) and lobes (or valleys). A variety of ammonite forms, from Ernst Haeckels 1904 Kunstformen der Natur. ... Bactritida are a small and poorly studied order of more or less straight-shelled (orthocone) nautiloids which first appeared during the Emsian Stage of the Devonian Period (390 my ago) and persisted until the Carnian Stage of the Triassic Period (235 my ago). ... The Silurian is a major division of the geologic timescale that extends from the end of the Ordovician period, about 443. ... Disambiguation: Devonian is sometimes used to refer to the Southwestern Brythonic language, and the people of the county of Devon are sometimes referred to as Devonians The Devonian is a geologic period of the Paleozoic era spanning from roughly 415 to 360 million years ago. ... In biology and ecology, extinction is the ceasing of existence of a species or group of species. ... The Cretaceous Period is one of the major divisions of the geologic timescale, reaching from the end of the Jurassic Period (i. ... Orders & Suborders Saurischia Sauropodomorpha Theropoda Ornithischia Thyreophora Ornithopoda Marginocephalia Dinosaurs were vertebrate animals that dominated the terrestrial ecosystem for over 160 million years, first appearing approximately 230 million years ago. ... Ornament is frequently used to denote: An element of decoration. ...


Suture patterns

Three major types of suture patterns in Ammonoidea have been noted:

  • Goniatitic - numerous undivided lobes and saddles; typically 8 lobes around the conch. This pattern is characteristic of the Paleozoic ammonoids.
  • Ceratitic - lobes have subdivided tips, giving them a saw-toothed appearance, and rounded undivided saddles. This suture pattern is characteristic of Triassic ammonoids and appears again in the Cretaceous "pseudoceratites."
  • Ammonitic - lobes and saddles are much subdivided (fluted); subdivisions are usually rounded instead of saw-toothed. Ammonoids of this type are the most important species from a biostratigraphical point of view. This suture type is characteristic of Jurassic and Cretaceous ammonoids but extends back all the way to the Permian.

Families all extinct Goniatites are an extinct group of ammonite, which are related to the nautiloids. ...

Orders and suborders

The three orders and various suborders of Ammonoidea are herein listed from most primitive to more derived. Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ...

  • Goniatitida (Devonian to Permian) -- have round saddles, pointed lobes
    • Anarcestina (Devonian only)
    • Clymeniina (upper Upper Devonian only)
    • Goniatitina (Devonian to Upper Permian) -- includes the true goniatites
  • Ceratitida (Carboniferous to Triassic) -- have round saddles, serrated lobes
    • Prolecanitina (Upper Devonian to Upper Triassic)
    • Ceratitina (Permian to Triassic) -- includes the true ceratites
  • Ammonitida (Permian to Cretaceous) -- have folded saddles and lobes, fractal patterns
    • Phylloceratina (Lower Triassic to Upper Cretaceous)
    • Ammonitina (Lower Jurassic to Upper Cretaceous) -- includes the true ammonites
    • Lytoceratina (Lower Jurassic to Upper Cretaceous)
    • Ancyloceratina (Upper Jurassic to Upper Cretaceous) -- the heteromorph ammonites

Families all extinct Goniatites are an extinct group of ammonite, which are related to the nautiloids. ... Families all extinct Goniatites are an extinct group of ammonite, which are related to the nautiloids. ...

Life

Jeletzkytes, a Cretaceous ammonite from the USA
Jeletzkytes, a Cretaceous ammonite from the USA

Because ammonites and their close relatives are extinct, little is known about their way of life. Their soft body parts are very rarely preserved in any detail. Nonetheless, much has been worked out by examining ammonoid shells and by using models of these shells in water tanks. Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1972x1816, 412 KB)Photograph of a fossil ammonite Jeletzkytes spedeni taken by Dlloyd. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (1972x1816, 412 KB)Photograph of a fossil ammonite Jeletzkytes spedeni taken by Dlloyd. ...


Many ammonoids probably lived in the open water of ancient seas, rather than at the sea bottom. This is suggested by the fact that their fossils are often found in rocks that were laid down under conditions where no bottom-dwelling life is found. Many of them (such as Oxynoticeras) are thought to have been good swimmers with flattened, discus-shaped, streamlined shells, although some ammonoids were less effective swimmers and were likely to have been slow-swimming bottom-dwellers. Ammonites and their kin probably preyed on fishes, crustaceans and other small creatures; while they themselves were preyed upon by such marine reptiles as mosasaurs. Fossilized ammonoids have been found showing teeth marks from such attacks. In marine geology and biology, benthos are the organisms and habitats of the sea floor; in freshwater biology they are the organisms and habitats of the bottoms of lakes, rivers, and creeks. ... A giant grouper at the Georgia Aquarium Fish are aquatic vertebrates that are typically cold-blooded; covered with scales, and equipped with two sets of paired fins and several unpaired fins. ... Classes & Subclasses Branchiopoda Phyllopoda Sarsostraca Remipedia Cephalocarida Maxillopoda Thecostraca Tantulocarida Branchiura Pentastomida Mystacocarida Copepoda Ostracoda Myodocopa Podocopa Malacostraca Phyllocarida Hoplocarida Eumalacostraca The crustaceans (Crustacea) are a large group of arthropods, comprising approximately 52,000 described species [1], and are usually treated as a subphylum [2].They include various familiar animals... Subclasses Anapsida Diapsida Synonyms Reptilia Laurenti, 1768 Reptiles are tetrapods and amniotes, animals whose embryos are surrounded by an amniotic membrane, and members of the class Sauropsida. ... Subfamilies Mosasaurinae Plioplatecarpinae Tylosaurinae Mosasaurs (from Latin Mosa, the Meuse river where the fossils were first discovered + Greek sauros, lizard) were serpentine marine reptiles, more closely related to snakes than to monitor lizards (Lee 1997). ...


Shell anatomy and diversity

Basic shell anatomy

The chambered part of the ammonite shell is called a phragmocone. The phragmocone contains a series of progressively larger chambers, called camerae (sing. camera) that are divided by thin walls called septa (sing. septum). Only the last and largest chamber, the body chamber, was occupied by the living animal at any given moment. As it grew, it added newer and larger chambers to the open end of the coil. Phragmocones are the chambered portions of the shell of a cephalopod. ... Camerae (sing. ... Septa (sing. ... The body chamber, also called the living chamber, is the outermost or last chamber in the shell of a nautiloid or ammonoid cephalopod. ...

A variety of ammonite forms, from Ernst Haeckel's 1904 Kunstformen der Natur (Artforms of Nature).
A variety of ammonite forms, from Ernst Haeckel's 1904 Kunstformen der Natur (Artforms of Nature).

A thin living tube called a siphuncle passed through the septa, extending from the ammonite's body into the empty shell chambers. Through a hyperosmotic active transport process, the ammonite emptied water out of these shell chambers. This enabled it to control the buoyancy of the shell and thereby rise or descend in the water column. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (2284x3244, 1611 KB) Summary This is an illustration from Ernst Haeckels Kunstformen der Natur of 1899, showing a collection of ammonites. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (2284x3244, 1611 KB) Summary This is an illustration from Ernst Haeckels Kunstformen der Natur of 1899, showing a collection of ammonites. ... Ernst Haeckel. ... The siphuncle is a strand of tissue passing longitudinally through the shell of a cephalopod mollusk. ... In physics, buoyancy is the upward force on an object produced by the surrounding fluid (i. ...


A primary difference between ammonites and nautiloids is that the siphuncle of ammonites (excepting Clymeniina) runs along the ventral periphery of the septa and camerae (i.e., the inner surface of the outer axis of the shell), while the siphuncle of nautiloids runs more or less through the center of the septa and camerae.


Sexual dimorphism

Ammonite species, Jurassic era
Ammonite species, Jurassic era

One feature found in shells of the modern Nautilus is the variation in the shape and size of the shell according to the gender of the animal, the shell of the male being slightly smaller and wider than that of the female. This sexual dimorphism is thought to be an explanation to the variation in size of certain ammonite shells of the same species, the larger shell (called a macroconch) being female, and the smaller shell (called a microconch) being male. This is thought to be because the female required a larger body size for egg production. A good example of this sexual variation is found in Bifericeras from the early part of the Jurassic period of Europe. Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Gender often refers to the distinctions between males and females in common usage. ... Female (left) and male Common Pheasant, illustrating the dramatic difference in both color and size between the sexes Sexual dimorphism is the systematic difference in form between individuals of different sex in the same species. ... // The image above is believed to be a replaceable fair use image. ... This article is 150 kilobytes or more in size. ...


It is only in relatively recent years that the sexual variation in the shells of ammonites has been recognized. The macroconch and microconch of one species were often previously mistaken for two closely related but different species occurring in the same rocks. However, these "pairs" were so consistently found together that it became apparent that they were in fact sexual forms of the same species.


Variations in shape

The majority of ammonites have a shell that is a planispiral flat coil, but some have a shell that is partially uncoiled, partially coiled and partially straight (as in Australiceras), nearly straight (as in baculites), or coiled helically - superficially like that of a large gastropod (as in Turrilites and Bostrychoceras). These partially uncoiled and totally uncoiled forms began to diversify mainly during the early part of the Cretaceous and are known as heteromorphs. Species all extinct Baculites (walking stick rock) is a genus of extinct marine animals in the phylum Mollusca and class Cephalopoda. ... Subclass Subclass Eogastropoda     Patellogastropoda Subclass Orthogastropoda   Superorder Cocculiniformia   Superorder Hot Vent Taxa     Neomphaolida   Superorder Vetigastropoda   Superorder Neritaemorphi     Neritopsina   Superorder Caenogastropoda     Architaenioglossa     Sorbeoconcha   Superorder Heterobranchia     Heterostropha     Opisthobranchia     Pulmonata The gastropods, or univalves, are the largest and most successful class of mollusks, with 60,000-75,000 species, and second largest class...


Perhaps the most extreme and bizarre looking example of a heteromorph is Nipponites, which appears to be a tangle of irregular whorls lacking any obvious symmetrical coiling. However, upon closer inspection the shell proves to be a three-dimensional network of connected "U" shapes. Nipponites occurs in rocks of the upper part of the Cretaceous in Japan and the USA.


Ammonites vary greatly in the ornamentation of their shells. Some may be smooth and relatively featureless, except for growth lines, and resemble that of the modern Nautilus. In others various patterns of spiral ridges and ribs or even spines are shown. This type of ornamentation of the shell is especially evident in the later ammonites of the Cretaceous.


The aptychus

Like the modern nautilus, many ammonites were probably able to withdraw their body into the living chamber of the shell and developed either a single horny plate or a pair of calcitic plates with which they were able to close the opening of the shell. The opening of the shell is called the aperture. The plates are collectively termed the aptychus or aptychi in the case of a pair of plates, and anaptychus in the case of a single plate. The aptychi were identical and equal in size. A fossil aptychus. ...

Asteroceras, a Jurassic ammonite from England
Asteroceras, a Jurassic ammonite from England

Anaptychi are relatively rare as fossils. They are found representing ammonites from the Devonian period through those of the Cretaceous period. Photograph of the ammonite Asteroceras obtusum taken by Dlloyd. ... Photograph of the ammonite Asteroceras obtusum taken by Dlloyd. ...


Calcified Aptychi only occur in ammonites from the Mesozoic era and are normally found detached from the shell and are rarely preserved in place. Still, sufficient numbers have been found closing the apertures of fossil ammonite shells as to leave no doubt as to their intended purpose. (This long-standing and wide-spread interpretation of the function of the aptychus has long been disputed. The latest studies suggest that the anaptychus may have in fact formed part of a special jaw apparatus). The Mesozoic Era is one of three geologic eras of the Phanerozoic eon. ...


Large numbers of detached aptychi occur in certain beds of rock (such as those from the Mesozoic in the Alps). These rocks are usually accumulated at great depths. The modern Nautilus lacks any calcitic plate for closing its shell, and only one extinct nautiloid genus is known to have borne anything similar. Nautilus does, however, have a leathery head shield (the hood) which it uses to cover the opening when it retreats inside. The west face of the Petit Dru above the Chamonix valley near the Mer de Glace. ... Orders Palcephalopoda †Plectronocerida †Ellesmerocerida †Actinocerida †Pseudorthocerida †Endocerida †Tarphycerida †Oncocerida †Discosorida Nautilida Neocephalopoda (in part) †Orthocerida †Ascocerida †Bactritida Nautiloids are a group of marine mollusks in the subclass Nautiloidea, which all possess an external shell, the best-known example being the modern nautiluses. ...


There are many forms of aptychus, varying in shape and the sculpture of the inner and outer surfaces, but because they are so rarely found in position within the shell of the ammonite it is often unclear to which species of ammonite many aptychi belong. A number of aptychi have been given their own genus and even species names independent of their unknown owners' genus and species, pending future discovery of verified occurrences within ammonite shells.


Size

A large Ammonite

Few of the ammonites occurring in the lower and middle part of the Jurassic period reach a size exceeding 23 centimetres (9 inches) in diameter. Much larger forms are found in the later rocks of the upper part of the Jurassic and the lower part of the Cretaceous, such as Titanites from the Portland Stone of Jurassic of southern England, which is often 53 centimetres (2 feet) in diameter, and Parapuzosia seppenradensis of the Cretaceous period of Germany, which is one of the largest known ammonites, sometimes reaching 2 metres (6.5 feet) in diameter. The largest documented North American ammonite is Parapuzosia bradyi from the Cretaceous with specimens measuring 137 centimetres (4.5 feet) in diameter, although a new British Columbian specimen appears to trump even the European champion.[citation needed] Image File history File links Steve_Leonard_&_Paul_Williams_-_Lyme_Regis_BBC_shoot_Sept_2003_011. ... Image File history File links Steve_Leonard_&_Paul_Williams_-_Lyme_Regis_BBC_shoot_Sept_2003_011. ... Binomial name Parapuzosia seppenradensis (Landois, 1895) Synonyms Pachydiscus seppenradensis Landois, 1895 Parapuzosia seppenradensis is the largest known species of ammonite. ... World map showing North America A satellite composite image of North America. ...


While I applaud the idea and the effort, this shared information idea, the fact remains that the editors of the New Testament also thought they did a good job.


Distribution

A specimen of Hoploscaphites from the Pierre Shale of South Dakota. Much of the original shell has survived.
A specimen of Hoploscaphites from the Pierre Shale of South Dakota. Much of the original shell has survived.

Starting from the late Silurian, ammonoids were extremely abundant, especially as ammonites during the Mesozoic era. Many genera evolved and ran their course quickly, becoming extinct in a few million years. Due to their rapid evolution and widespread distribution, ammonoids are used by geologists and paleontologists for biostratigraphy. They are excellent index fossils, and it is often possible to link the rock layer in which they are found to specific geological time periods. Download high resolution version (1369x1289, 609 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Download high resolution version (1369x1289, 609 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... The Mesozoic Era is one of three geologic eras of the Phanerozoic eon. ... For other uses of the word, please see Genus (disambiguation). ... This article is about evolution in biology. ... The Geologist by Carl Spitzweg A geologist is a contributor to the science of geology, studying the physical structure and processes of the Earth and planets of the solar system (see planetary geology). ... A paleontologist carefully chips rock from a column of dinosaur vertebrae. ... Biostratigraphy is the science of dating rocks by using the fossils contained within them. ... Index fossils (or zone fossils) are fossils used to define and identify geologic periods (or faunal stages). ... The geologic time scale is used by geologists and other scientists to describe the timing and relationships between events that have occurred during the history of the Earth. ...

An iridescent ammonite from Madagascar.
An iridescent ammonite from Madagascar.

Due to their free-swimming and/or free-floating habits, ammonites often happened to live directly above seafloor waters so poor in oxygen as to prevent the establishment of animal life on the seafloor. When upon death the ammonites fell to this seafloor and were gradually buried in accumulating sediment, bacterial decomposition of these corpses often tipped the delicate balance of local redox conditions sufficiently to lower the local solubility of minerals dissolved in the seawater, notably phosphates and carbonates. The resulting spontaneous concentric precipitation of minerals around a fossil is called a concretion and is responsible for the outstanding preservation of many ammonite fossils. Download high resolution version (1276x1366, 252 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Download high resolution version (1276x1366, 252 KB) Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... Nekton is the grouping of living organisms that live in the water column of the ocean and freshwater lakes. ... Photomontage of plankton organisms This page is about microscopic sea creatures. ... Illustration of a redox reaction Redox (shorthand for oxidation/reduction reaction) describes all chemical reactions in which atoms have their oxidation number (oxidation state) changed. ... In chemistry, a phosphate is a polyatomic ion or radical consisting of one phosphorus atom and four oxygen. ... Carbonate is an anion with a charge of -2 and an empirical formula of CO32-. An aqueous solution of carbon dioxide contains a minute amount of H2CO3, called carbonic acid, which dissociates to form hydrogen ions and carbonate ions. ... 1. ...


When ammonites are found in clays their original mother-of-pearl coating is often preserved. This type of preservation is found in ammonites such as Hoplites from the Cretaceous Gault clay of Folkestone in Kent, England. The Gay Head cliffs in Marthas Vineyard are made almost entirely of clay. ... Nacre, also known as mother of pearl, is a naturally-occurring organic-inorganic composite. ... The Gault Clay is a formation of stiff blue clay deposited in a calm, fairly deep water marine environment during the Lower Cretaceous Period (Upper and Middle Albian). ... Motto: (French for God and my right) Anthem: God Save the King/Queen Capital London (de facto) Largest city London Official language(s) English (de facto) Unification    - by Athelstan AD 927  Area    - Total 130,395 km² (1st in UK)   50,346 sq mi  Population    - 2006 est. ...


The Cretaceous Pierre Shale formation of the United States and Canada is well known for the abundant ammonite fauna it yields, including Baculites, Placenticeras, Scaphites, Hoploscaphites, and Jeletzkytes, as well as many uncoiled forms. Many of these also have much or all of the original shell, as well as the complete body chamber, still intact. Many Pierre Shale ammonites, and indeed many ammonites throughout earth history, are found inside concretions. Species all extinct Scaphites (Greek skafh, a boat or anything dug or scooped out) is a genus of extinct cephalopod belonging to the ammonite family (order Ancyloceratida). ... 1. ...


Other fossils, such as many found in Madagascar and Alberta (Canada), display iridescence. These iridescent ammonites are often of gem quality (ammolite) when polished. In no case would this iridescence have been visible during the animal's life; additional shell layers covered it. Motto: Fortis et liber (Latin: Strong and free) Official languages English (see below) Flower   Wild rose Tree Lodgepole Pine Bird Great Horned Owl Capital Edmonton Largest city Calgary Lieutenant-Governor Norman Kwong Premier Ed Stelmach (PC) Parliamentary representation  - House seats  - Senate seats 28 6 Area Total  - Land  - Water  (% of total... The iridescence of the Blue Morpho butterfly wings. ... An unprocessed sample of ammolite on shale matrix, photographed wet and in natural light to simulate the effects of polishing. ...


The majority of ammonoid specimens, especially those of the Paleozoic era, are preserved only as internal molds; that it to say, the outer shell (composed of aragonite) has been lost through fossilization. It is only in these internal-moldic specimens that the suture lines can be observed; in life the sutures would have been hidden by the outer shell. The Paleozoic Era (from the Greek palaio, old and zoion, animals, meaning ancient life) is the earliest of three geologic eras of the Phanerozoic eon. ... Aragonite Aragonite is a polymorph of the mineral calcite, both having the chemical composition CaCO3. ...


The ammonoids survived several major extinction events, with often only a few species surviving. Each time,however, this handful would diversify into a multitude of forms. Ammonite fossils became less abundant during the latter part of the Mesozoic, with none surviving into the Cenozoic era. The last surviving lines disappeared along with the dinosaurs 65 million years ago in the Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction event. That no ammonites survived the extinction event at the end of the Cretaceous, while some nautiloid cousins survived, might be due to differences in ontogeny. If their extinction was due to an meteor strike, plankton around the globe could have been severely diminished, thereby dooming ammonite reproduction during its planktonic stage. For the Big Finish Productions audio play, see The Extinction Event. ... The Mesozoic Era is one of three geologic eras of the Phanerozoic eon. ... The Cenozoic Era (IPA pronunciation: ); sometimes Caenozoic Era in the United Kingdom) meaning new life (Greek kainos = new + zoe = life) is the most recent of the three classic geological eras. ... Badlands near Drumheller, Alberta where erosion has exposed the KT boundary. ... For the Big Finish Productions audio play, see The Extinction Event. ... Ontogeny (also ontogenesis or morphogenesis) describes the origin and the development of an organism from the fertilized egg to its mature form. ... Photo of a burst of meteors with extended exposure time A meteor is the visible path of a meteoroid that enters the Earths (or another bodys) atmosphere, commonly called a shooting star or falling star. ... Photomontage of plankton organisms This page is about microscopic sea creatures. ...


Trivia

Fossilized ammonite from Morocco
Fossilized ammonite from Morocco

In medieval times, ammonites were believed to be petrified snakes. They were frequently fitted with carved snake-like heads and sold to pilgrims. A famous example of this links the ammonite fossils common in the Jurassic sediments around Whitby, North Yorkshire with the legend that St. Hilda turned a plague of snakes into stone. Even today, tourists can buy ammonite fossils with heads carved onto them to make them look more snake-like. Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (778x697, 542 KB)Fossilized ammonite. ... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high resolution version (778x697, 542 KB)Fossilized ammonite. ... blue: sea snakes, black: land snakes Superfamilies and Families Henophidia Aniliidae Anomochilidae Boidae Bolyeriidae Cylindrophiidae Loxocemidae Pythonidae Tropidophiidae Uropeltidae Xenopeltidae Typhlopoidea Anomalepididae Leptotyphlopidae Typhlopidae Xenophidia Acrochordidae Atractaspididae Colubridae Elapidae Hydrophiidae Viperidae For other uses, see Snake (disambiguation). ... Whitby is a historic town in North Yorkshire on the north-east coast of England. ... Look up Yorkshire in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Hilda of Whitby is a Christian Saint. ...


It is said that the original discus used by the ancient Greeks in their Olympics was in fact a fossilized ammonite;[citation needed] a number of ammonite generic names include an explicit reference to the discus shape (e.g., Sphenodiscus). Ruins of the training grounds at Olympia // her myth tells of the hero Hercules, who won a race at Olympia and then decreed that the race should be re-enacted every four years, while another claims that Zeus had instated the festival after his defeat of the Titan Cronus. ...


In India, ammonite fossils are identified with the god Vishnu and are used in various ceremonies. They are mostly collected in Nepal, from the bed of the River Gandaki where it cuts through Jurassic sediments. These fossils are known as "shaligram shila"[1]. Vishnu (IAST , Devanagari ), (honorific: Sri Vishnu) also known as Narayana is the Supreme Being or Ultimate Reality for Vaishnavas and a manifestation of Brahman in the Advaita or Smarta traditions. ...


Terminological note

The words "ammonite" and "ammonoid" are both used quite loosely in common parlance to refer to any member of Subclass Ammonoidea. However, in stricter usage the term "ammonite" is reserved for members of Suborder Ammonitina (or sometimes even Order Ammonitida).


References and further reading

  • Neal L Larson, Steven D Jorgensen, Robert A Farrar and Peter L Larson. Ammonites and the other Cephalopods of the Pierre Seaway. Geoscience Press, 1997.
  • Lehmann, Ulrich. The Ammonites: Their life and their world. Cambridge University Press, New York, 1981. Translated from German by Janine Lettau.
  • Monks, Neale and Palmer, Phil. Ammonites. Natural History Museum, 2002.
  • Walker, Cyril and Ward, David. Fossils. Dorling, Kindersley Limited, London, 2002.
  • A Broad Brush History of the Cephalopoda by Dr. Neale Monks, from The Cephalopod Page.
  • Ammonite maturity, pathology and old age By Dr. Neale Monks, from The Cephalopod Page. Essay about the life span of Ammonites.
  • Cretaceous Fossils Taxonomic Index for Order Ammonoitida
  • Deeply Buried Sediments Tell Story of Sudden Mass Extinction

See also

Precambrian (3. ... Extinct Orders Aulacocerida Phragmoteuthida Belemnitida Diplobelida Belemnoteuthina Belemnites (or belemnoids) are an extinct group of marine cephalopod, very similar in many ways to the modern squid and closely related to the modern cuttlefish. ... Orders Nautilida Bactrida Nautiloids are a group of marine animals which all possess an external shell, the most well known example being the modern nautiluses. ... Orders Aulacocerida (extinct) Hematitida  (extinct) Phragmoteuthida  (extinct) Belemnitida  (extinct) Sepiida Sepiolida Spirulida Teuthida Octopoda Vampyromorphida Subclass Coleoidea is the grouping of cephalopods containing all the primarily soft-bodied creatures. ... An unprocessed sample of ammolite on shale matrix, photographed wet and in natural light to simulate the effects of polishing. ... A selection of gemstone pebbles made by tumbling rough rock with abrasive grit, in a rotating drum. ...

External links

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Image File history File links Commons-logo. ... Wikimedia Commons logo by Reid Beels The Wikimedia Commons (also called Commons or Wikicommons) is a repository of free content images, sound and other multimedia files. ...

Notes

  1. ^ NH 37.40.167

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