Lower Cambrian Mule Spring Limestone

Esmeralda County, Nevada

An extinct lophophorate hyolithid dissolved free from carbonate rocks in the lower Cambrian Mule Spring Limestone, Great Basin Desert, Nevada. Specimen is greatly magnified, called scientifically genus Parkula. Zoological affinity to living lophophorate brachiopods, bryozoans, and phoronid annelids is definitively established. Still and all, they remain enigmatic early Cambrian constituents of a group of extinct organisms commonly grouped together as "small shelly fossils." Photograph courtesy a specific scientific publication.

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