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Anomalocaris

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Anomalocaris

530 MYA - Anomalocaris rules the oceans. It was the largest animal so far found from that time

The world's original Super-Predator. Anomalocaris lived 535-520 Million Years Ago, and was truly gigantic compared with the other animals that it shared its world with - Palaeontologists say it was 10 times bigger than anything else around. It therefore displayed Gigantism. A 50cm - 2 metre long apex predator, it had an exclusively carnivorous diet, hunting virtually everything and anything it could tackle, including the Trilobites. Although top of the food chain for a time, Anomalocaris and the family of which it is the namesake (Anomalocarids) is part of a lost line of Cambrian Period 'evolutionary experiments', that were in a sense evolutionary dead-ends. They did not survive into the Ordovician Period, and they seem to have been replaced by superior Arthropod predators such as the Eurypterids and the True Arachnid Scorpions. Even so, in its time, Anomalocaris was the king of the seas, and the only other creature on the planet that any given Anomalocaris would fear, would have been just another Anomalocaris. The evidence for Anomalocaris originally comes from the Burgess Shales Formation of Canada, and more recently from Australia and China. There are fantastically well preserved specimens, and they are an awesome to behold,
Anomalocaris 2

A duelling pair of Anomalocaris.

considering that they are 300 million years older than any Dinosaur and yet seem to have been deposited within our lifetime they are so exquisitely detailed in their preservation.

Walking With MonstersEdit

They are the top predator of the Cambrian Period seas, crunching through Trilobites and 'jousting' with each other in territorial disputes. The appendages, the claw like fangs, are used to pin down, cut up and devour its prey. An injured Anomalocaris is seen to be irritated by a large shoal of diminutive Haikouichythes Fish - the earliest known Vertebrate, runner to all future back-boned animals, 'from the Dinosaur, to the Elephant, to us...'.

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