Size: This specimen if out-stretched would be approximately 11 ¼” in
length. The plate size is 15” x 11 x 1 ¾”
Fossil Location: Malm epsilon, Bayern, Germany
Comments: Presented is a spectacular specimen of this salt- water predator.
It exhibits excellent preservation of the rostrum, head, scales and
fins. Note the intact caudal, pectoral, anal and pelvic fins. The small
sharp teeth are excellently preserved. The specimen is side facing
in a graceful death pose. The plate is thick and heavy providing an
aesthetic mounting for the Aspidorhynchus to reside. The plate was
cracked into three sections. It was professionally repaired, losing
none of the fish’s detail. The fossil has had no restoration.
The Aspidorhynchus was excavated from the famous Painten Quarry, a
part of the Solnhofen Plattenkalk. The fossils found at this particular
quarry have a slightly different matrix composition, and distinctive
sweet chocolate color. Fossils from the Painten Quarry are highly valued
for their color and rarity. Aspidorhynchus (meaning "shield snout")
is an extinct genus of ray-finned fish from the Jurassic and Cretaceous
periods. Fossils have been found in Europe and Antarctica. Aspidorhynchus
was a slender, fast-swimming fish, 60 centimetres (2.0 ft) long, with
tooth-lined, elongated jaws. It also had heavy scales and a symmetrical
tail. The upper jaw was longer than the lower jaw, ending in a toothless
spike. Although it would have looked superficially similar to the present
day gar, its closest living relative is actually the bowfin. The species
derives its name from the sharp rostrum which it presumably used to
slash sidewise at prey fish. Once its prey was stunned, the sharp teeth
would have come into play. The genus became extinct in the Cretaceous,
leaving no descendants.
This spectacular fossil comes from the famous Lagerstätte, the
lithographic limestone Solnhofen deposits of Germany. These 150 million
year old deposits are famous for their exceptionally well-preserved
and diverse organisms, the most famous of which are the handful of
specimens of the ancient bird Archaeopteryx.
$1700.00 - Code PFT260 - Free postage in the USA