Spinacanthus

Spinacanthus cuneiformis is an extinct prehistoric tetraodontid bony fish that lived from the Lutetian epoch of Eocene Monte Bolca.[1]

Spinacanthus
Temporal range: Early- Middle Eocene[1]
Spinacanthus cuneiformis.jpg
Artist's reconstruction
Scientific classification
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Genus:
Spinacanthus

Agassiz, 1835
Species:
S. blennioides
Binomial name
Spinacanthus blennioides
(Agassiz, 1835)

In life, it would have resembled a somewhat-flattened boxfish with five long spines along the anterior-dorsal side, with the longest spine directly above the forehead, and the shortest spine directly in front of the dorsal fin. It is distinguished from its close, sympatric relative, Protobalistum, in that its individual scales are relatively small, and do not touch each other. (In Protobalistum, the scales are large, and form a sort of armor).

S. cuneiformis and Protobalistum were a part of the ecosystem of the lagoon that became Monte Bolca. Because of their similarity to boxfish, and due to their close relation to modern-day triggerfish, spinacanthids may have preyed on shellfish and small fish.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b Sepkoski, Jack (2002). "A compendium of fossil marine animal genera". Bulletins of American Paleontology. 364: 560. Retrieved 2009-02-27.