Dicranurus monstrosus, Trilobite

Dicranurus monstrosus, Trilobite

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Here is one of the more sought after trilobites of the Order Lichida, Family Odontopleuridae known as Dicranurus monstrosus. This specimen was found in the Devonian Megrane Formation near Oulmes, Morocco. Among its impressive features are the dramatically retorted occipital spines, looking like ram's horns. To what purpose could this spiny exoskeleton have been evolved? The answer is simple -- DEFENSE!! Fish had recently evolved jaws, and in the never ending arms race between predator and prey, Dicranurus' amswer was a spectacular defensive array of spines
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