Joint development – based on research results Two Polish scientists and a team of archaeologists from France, Germany and Switzerland – Published in the journal Royal Society Open Science on Wednesday.
These results prove not only that What did extinct species look like and how did they live? But also how It has evolved and changed over time – confirmed by the authors.
An exceptional discovery with the participation of Polish scientists. This is Alencanthus Malkowski
It all started In 1957. At that time, an outstanding Polish paleontologist Julian Kulczycki He discovered two long, thin bones, partially broken, in the Świętokrzyskie Mountains near Cesinje.. The scientist said they were the spines of fish fins.
Kulczycki named the discovery Alencanthosim Malkowski. The second part of the Latin name was given in tribute Professor Stanislaw Malkowski, employee of the Polish Geological Institute and first director of the Earth Museum of the Polish Academy of Sciences. This is how one species was discovered Armored fishalso known as Dermis placodes.
50 years later, another paleontologist – Ph.D. Piotr Zrek Similar remains were found in the same place. It was thought that they were elongated bones They can't be thorns, Because it was not hollow inside and had an asymmetric structure. The results led him to classify the fossils as… Exceptionally long jaws.
They also conducted concurrent research Paleontologists from France, Germany and Switzerland, who made similar discoveries in and during the collections of the Museum of Natural History in Paris Excavations in Morocco
The pole and international experts learned about their results By chance during a scientific conference. Since then, they have been working to further research and describe Alienacanthus together.
Extremely long jaw. “Very rare among species”
The team decided so The length of this type of armored fish ranged between 2.5 to 3 meters, and it had large eyes and a huge body. Narrow head about 80 cm long. The lower jaw has two long spines with sharp, conical, backward-curved teeth.
Such a jaw – Twice the length of the skull – Unique and extremely rare among extinct and living representatives of this species. It is observed in most animals The upper jaw protrudes, not the lower jaw. For example in swordfish. Among living individuals, it is the only one with features similar to Alienacanthus A small fish known as the half-beak – Measures the length of his body From 5 to 10 cm.
Alienacanthus likely used its sharp teeth to… Catching live victims in a trap. He probably used his elongated jaw Search at the bottom In search of food or to confuse or harm his future meal. Swordfish use similar tactics today. Scientists speculate that the lower jaw could also beTo defend and deter other predators.
The discovered species swam in the world's waters During the Devonian Period (about 358-419 million years ago – ed.)which paleontologists refer to as The age of the fish. At that time, there were different groups of species that lived in the oceans – mainly Sharks and bony fish whether A fish without a jaw.
In the late Devonian period, several million years after the appearance of Alienacanthus malkowskii, Armored fish became extinct in one of the major extinction events.
How did armored fish get to Poland?
How is this possible?The remains of Alienacanthus have been found And in the Świętokrzyskie mountains and in Morocco?
In the late Devonian Today's Poland was under water Near the northeastern coast of the vast oceans – Rick and Paleothis The modern Morocco region was at its southern tip. Thus fish can migrate freely Where conditions were favorable and plenty of food.
– It seems we already know everything about placoderms. We know their vitality, the structure of internal organs, and different life strategies. But it turns out that the fish we discovered is just that Unlike anything else known from the Devonian period. Similar structural modifications appeared many years later and even in modern animals Rare – said Dr. Habb. Piotr Zrek in the podcast “Geology of the Ear” of the Polish Geological Institute, National Research Institute.
source: PAP, Royal Society for Open Science
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