Living the Scientific Life (Scientist, Interrupted)

Lituites lituus

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Lituites lituus.

Senckenberg Naturmuseum, Frankfurt am Main, Germany.

Image: GrrlScientist, 13 April 2010 [larger view]

If you were here today, I would show you this lovely Ordovician fossil shell. The Ordovician Period began with a series of major extinction events that ended the Cambrian Period roughly 488.3 ± 1.7 million years ago, and lasted for about 44.6 million years. Despite a world filled with destruction, death and mass extinctions, this little animal managed to live.


  1. #1 SimonG
    April 18, 2010

    That’s a weird looking thing. As if it couldn’t decide whether to be straight or coiled.

  2. #2 Frank Habets
    April 18, 2010

    Most Ordo cephalopods are of the straight shell design. That’s an early example of ‘deviancy’ from the up-to-then norm. They would soon evolved a great variety of designs, with the more extreme ones looking like losers in a pasta-design contest.

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