Paleontologists Disagree About What This Exquisite Shark Fossil Actually Is | Technology

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The fossil shark Ptychodus was first identified 190 years ago, but in the intervening centuries of paleontological inquiry, a comprehensive look at the ancient fish has been hard to come by. Until now. In a paper published last week in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B, a team of researchers describe an exceptionally well-preserved Ptychodus, fossilized from its nose to the tip of its tail.

“This new study provides crucial information on the affinities [evolutionary relations] and the paleoecology of Ptychodus,” said Romain Vullo, a paleontologist at the University of Rennes in France and lead author of the paper, in an email to Gizmodo. “So far, this Cretaceous shark was only known from isolated teeth, dentitions [sets of teeth], and a few skeletal…


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