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Encyclopedia > Archaeocyatha
Archaeocyatha
Fossil range: Early - Mid Cambrian

Scientific classification
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Animalia or Metazoa
Subkingdom: Parazoa
Phylum: Porifera? (sponges)
(unranked) Archaeocyatha
*1 – Gap (intervallum) *2 – Central cavity *3 – Internal wall *4 – Pore (all the walls and septa have pores, not all are represented) *5 – Septum *6 – External wall *7 – Rizoid
*1 – Gap (intervallum)
*2 – Central cavity *3 – Internal wall *4 – Pore (all the walls and septa have pores, not all are represented) *5 – Septum *6 – External wall *7 – Rizoid

The Archaeocyatha or archaeocyathids ("ancient cups") were sessile, reef-building[1] marine organisms of warm tropical and subtropical waters that lived during the early (lower) Cambrian period. They are first known from the beginning of the Tommotian Age of the Cambrian, about 530 million years ago (mya), and quickly diversified into over a hundred families. They became the planet's very first reef building animals. For other uses, see Cambrian (disambiguation). ... Scientific classification redirects here. ... Kingdoms Eukaryotes are organisms with complex cells, in which the genetic material is organized into membrane-bound nuclei. ... Phyla Subkingdom Parazoa Porifera (sponges) Subkingdom Agnotozoa Placozoa Orthonectida Rhombozoa Subkingdom Metazoa Radiata Cnidaria Ctenophora - Comb jellies Bilateria Protostomia Acoelomorpha Platyhelminthes - Flatworms Nemertina - Ribbon worms Gastrotricha Gnathostomulida - Jawed worms Micrognathozoa Rotifera - Rotifers Acanthocephala Priapulida Kinorhyncha Loricifera Entoprocta Nematoda - Roundworms Nematomorpha - Horsehair worms Cycliophora Mollusca - Mollusks Sipuncula - Peanut worms Annelida - Segmented... Phyla Radiata Cnidaria Ctenophora - Comb jellies Bilateria Protostomia Acoelomorpha Platyhelminthes - Flatworms Nemertina - Ribbon worms Gastrotricha Gnathostomulida - Jawed worms Micrognathozoa Rotifera - Rotifers Acanthocephala Priapulida Kinorhyncha Loricifera Entoprocta Nematoda - Roundworms Nematomorpha - Horsehair worms Cycliophora Mollusca - Mollusks Sipuncula - Peanut worms Annelida - Segmented worms Tardigrada - Water bears Onychophora - Velvet worms Arthropoda - Insects, etc. ... This article is about the animal. ... The sponge, in the phylum Porifera, is a very primitive and specialized animal. ... Look up sessile in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... For other uses, see Reef (disambiguation). ... Marine is an umbrella term for things relating to the ocean, as with marine biology, marine geology, and as a term for a navy, etc. ... For other uses, see Cambrian (disambiguation). ... The Tommotian Age is an early part of the Cambrian period. ... For other uses of mya, see mya (disambiguation). ... Charles Darwins first sketch of an evolutionary tree from his First Notebook on Transmutation of Species (1837) Speciation is the evolutionary process by which new biological species arise. ... The hierarchy of scientific classification In biological classification, family (Latin: familia, plural familiae) is a rank, or a taxon in that rank. ... For other uses, see Reef (disambiguation). ...


Today, the archaeocyathan families are recognizable by small but consistent differences in their fossilized structures: Some archaeocyathans were built like nested bowls, while others were as long as 30 cm. Some archaeocyaths were solitary organisms, while others formed colonies. Then, around 520 mya, the archaeocyaths went into a sharp decline. Almost all species became extinct by the Middle Cambrian, with the final-known species disappearing just prior to the end of the Cambrian period.[2] Their rapid decline and disappearance coincided with a rapid diversification of the Demosponges. For other uses, see Fossil (disambiguation). ... This is a biological article: For a territory administered by another territory see: Colony For a group attempting to affiliate with a Fraternity or Sorority see: Colony (fraternity) In biology, a colony (from Latin colonia) refers to several individual organisms of the same species living closely together, usually for mutual... For other uses of mya, see mya (disambiguation). ... In biology and ecology, extinction is the ceasing of existence of a species or group of species. ... Four of the 13 finch species found on the Galápagos Archipelago, and thought to have evolved by an adaptive radiation that diversified their beak shapes to adapt them to different food sources. ... Demosponges are the largest class of Phylum Porifera. ...


The typical archaeocyathd resembled a hollow horn coral. Each had a conical or vase-shaped porous skeleton of calcite similar to that of a sponge. The structure appeared like a pair of perforated, nested ice cream cones. Their skeletons consisted of either a single porous wall (Monocyathida), or more commonly as two concentric porous walls, an inner and outer wall separated by a space. Inside the inner wall was a cavity (like the inside of an empty ice cream cone). At the base, these pleosponges were held to substrate with holdfast. The body presumably occupied the space between the inner and outer shells (the intervallum). Flow tank experiments suggest that archaeocyathan morphology allowed them to exploit flow gradients, either by passively pumping water through the skeleton, or, as in present-day, extant sponges, by drawing water through the pores, removing nutrients, and expelling spent water and wastes through the pores into the central space. Also called tetracoralla, the Rugosa are an extinct group of corals that were abundant in Middle Ordovician to Late Permian seas. ... For other uses, see Skeleton (disambiguation). ... Doubly refracting Calcite from Iceberg claim, Dixon, New Mexico. ... Classes Calcarea Hexactinellida Demospongiae The sponges or poriferans (from Latin porus pore and ferre to bear) are animals of the phylum Porifera. ... Look up substrate in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... A holdfast is a rootlike plant structure that anchors a seaweed. ... The term morphology in biology refers to the outward appearance (shape, structure, colour, pattern) of an organism or taxon and its component parts. ... For other uses, see Skeleton (disambiguation). ... In biology, extant taxon is commonly used in discussions of living and fossil species. ... A pore, in general, is some form of opening, usually very small. ...


The archaeocyathans inhabited coastal areas of shallow seas. Their widespread distribution over almost the entire Cambrian world, as well as the taxonomic diversity of the species, might be explained by surmising that that they were planktonic during their larval stage. Taxonomy (from Greek ταξινομία from the words taxis = order and nomos = law) may refer to either a hierarchical classification of things, or the principles underlying the classification. ... For other uses, see Species (disambiguation). ... Photomontage of plankton organisms Plankton is the aggregate community of weakly swimming but mostly drifting small organisms that inhabit the water column of the ocean, seas, and bodies of freshwater. ... A larval insect A larva (Latin; plural larvae) is a juvenile form of animal with indirect development, undergoing metamorphosis (for example, insects or amphibians). ...


Their phylogenetic affiliation has been subject to changing interpretations: Yet the consensus is growing that the archaeocyath was indeed a kind of sponge,[3]thus sometimes called a pleosponge. But some invertebrate paleontologists have placed them in an extinct, separate phylum, known appropriately as the Archaeocyatha.[4] However, one cladistic analysis[5] suggests that Archaeocyatha is a clade nested within the phylum Porifera (better known as the true sponges). A phylogeny (or phylogenesis) is the origin and evolution of a set of organisms, usually of a species. ... Invertebrate is an English word that describes any animal without a spinal column. ... A paleontologist carefully chips rock from a column of dinosaur vertebrae. ... 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. ... This cladogram shows the relationship among various insect groups. ... A clade is a term belonging to the discipline of cladistics. ... For other uses, see phyla. ... The sponge, in the phylum Porifera, is a very primitive and specialized animal. ...


Notes

  1. ^ Archaeocyathid reef structures ("bioherms"), although not as massive as later coral reefs, might have been as deep as ten meters (Emiliani 1992:451).
  2. ^ The last-recorded archaeocyathan is a single species from the late (upper) Cambrian of Antarctica.
  3. ^ Scuba divers have discovered living calcareous sponges, including one species that -- like the archaeocyathans -- is without spicules, thus morphologically similar to the archaeocyaths. (Rowland 2001).
  4. ^ Debrenne, F. and J. Vacelet. 1984. "Archaeocyatha: Is the sponge model consistent with their structural organization?" in Palaeontographica Americana, 54:pp358-369.
  5. ^ J. Reitner. 1990. "Polyphyletic origin of the 'Sphinctozoans'", in Rutzler, K. (ed.), New Perspectives in Sponge Biology: Proceedings of the Third International Conference on the Biology of Sponges (Woods Hole) pp. 33-42. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, DC.

Calcium carbonate is a chemical compound, with the chemical formula CaCO3. ... Spicules Spicules are skeletal structures that occur in most sponges. ...

References

Cesare Emiliani in the early 1950s when he was doing his pioneering research at the University of Chicago (Photo from the Archives of the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science, University of Miami) Cesare Emiliani (8 December 1922, Bologna, Italy - 20 July 1995, Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, USA) is...

External links


  Results from FactBites:
 
Archaeocyatha - What is a(n) Archaeocyatha | Encyclopedia.com: Dictionary Of Zoology (663 words)
Archaeocyatha An extinct phylum of reef-forming organisms known only from the Cambrian.
A Dictionary of Zoology Anthocyathea (Irregulares; phylum Archaeocyatha) A class of solitary, rarely colonial organisms found in Lower, Middle, and Upper Cambrian rocks.
The Archaeocyatha became extinct by the middle Cambrian.
Reference.com/Encyclopedia/Archaeocyatha (264 words)
Archaeocyatha inhabited areas of shallow seas that were near the shoreline.
Their widespread distribution over almost the entire Cambrian world, as well as the diversity of the species, can be explained by surmising that that they were planktonic during their larval stage.
Cladistic analysis suggests that Archaeocyatha is a clade nested within the Porifera (sponges).
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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