Pholidophorus (from Greek: φολῐ́ς pholis, 'horny scale' and Greek: φέρω phérō, 'to bear')[1] is an extinct genus of stem-teleost fish. Numerous species were assigned to this genus in the past, but only the type species Pholidophorus latiusculus, from the Late Triassic of Europe, is considered to be a valid member of the genus today.[2][3]

Temporal range: Norian
Pholidophorus latiusculus fossil
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Actinopterygii
Order: Pholidophoriformes
Family: Pholidophoridae
Genus: Pholidophorus
Agassiz, 1832
P. latiusculus
Binomial name
Pholidophorus latiusculus
Agassiz, 1832

Taxonomy edit

For a long time, the genus Philodophorus served as a wastebasket taxon containing various unrelated species of basal stem teleosts. Over the years, many of these have been moved to separate genera. The Late Jurassic nominal species "Pholidophorus" purbeckensis was renamed Ichthyokentema by Arthur Woodward in 1941.[4] Likewise, the Early Jurassic form "Pholidophorus" bechei was renamed Dorsetichthys and moved to its own family, Dorsetichthyidae, by Arratia (2013).[5] The nominal species "Pholidophorus" friedeni Delsate, 1999, and "Pholidophorus" gervasuttii Zambelli, 1980, were renamed Luxembourgichthys and Lombardichthys by Taverne and Steurbaut (2017) and Arratia (2017), respectively.[6][2]

Description edit

Pholidophorus was a herring-like fish about 40 centimetres (16 in) long, although it was not closely related to modern herring. Like them, however, it had a single dorsal fin, a symmetrical tail, and an anal fin placed towards the rear of the body. It had large eyes and was probably a fast-swimming predator, hunting planktonic crustaceans and smaller fish.[7]

A very early teleost, Pholidophorus had many primitive characteristics, such as ganoid scales and a spine that was partially composed of cartilage rather than bone.[7]

References edit

  1. ^ Roberts, G. (1839). An etymological and explanatory dictionary of the terms and language of geology. London: Longman, Orme, Brown, Green, & Longmans. p. 133. Retrieved 31 December 2021.
  2. ^ a b Arratia, G. (2017). "New Triassic teleosts (Actinopterygii, Teleosteomorpha) from northern Italy and their phylogenetic relationships among the most basal teleosts". Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. 37 (2): e1312690. Bibcode:2017JVPal..37E2690A. doi:10.1080/02724634.2017.1312690. S2CID 89773927.
  3. ^ Taverne, L. (2018). "The Mesozoic fish genus Pholidophorus (Teleostei, Pholidophoriformes), with an osteological study of the type-species Pholidophorus latiusculus. Comments on some problems concerning the "pholidophoriform" fishes" (PDF). Geo-Eco-Trop. 42 (1): 89–116.
  4. ^ Griffith, J.; Patterson, C. (1963). "The structure and relationships of the Jurassic fish Ichthyokentema purbeckensis". Bulletin of the British Museum (Natural History), Geology. 8 (1): 1–43. doi:10.5962/p.313875.
  5. ^ Arratia, G. (2013). "Morphology, taxonomy, and phylogeny of Triassic pholidophorid fishes (Actinopterygii, Teleostei)". Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. 33 (sup1): 1–138. Bibcode:2013JVPal..33S...1A. doi:10.1080/02724634.2013.835642. S2CID 86605978.
  6. ^ Taverne, L.; Steurbaut, E. (2017). "Osteology and relationships of Luxembourgichthys ("Pholidophorus") friedeni gen. nov. (Teleostei, "Pholidophoriformes") from the Lower Jurassic of Belgium and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg". Geologica Belgica. 20 (1–2): 53–67. doi:10.20341/gb.2017.003.
  7. ^ a b Palmer, D., ed. (1999). The Marshall Illustrated Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs and Prehistoric Animals. London: Marshall Editions. pp. 38–39. ISBN 1-84028-152-9.