Article: Redescription of the Chengjiang arthropod Squamacula clypeata Hou and Bergström, from the Lower Cambrian, south-west China
The anatomy of the arthropod Squamacula clypeata Hou and Bergstrom, 1997 from the Lower Cambrian Chengjiang Lagerstautte is redescribed based on four newly excavated specimens. The new material was collected from localities recently discovered in the Kunming area, Yunnan Province, south-west China, and preserves remarkable details of the ventral morphology, revealed by preparation. Squamacula clypeata is dorsoventrally flattened and rounded in outline. The cephalon was covered by a wide, short shield, with a large doublure and a pair of uniramous antennae on the ventral side. The thorax consists of nine somites, each protected by a tergite and carrying at least one pair of biramous limbs. The pygidium is covered with a small rounded tergum. The endopod is segmented, equipped with short spines on the inner margin of the coxa and a claw-like structure distally, and the exopod flap-like, fringed with setae. The limbs in the pygidium are like those in the thorax in shape. Squamacula was most probably a nektobenthic predator. The spinose endopod could walk, grasp and grind. The large flap-like exopod was adapted for swimming and respiration. Its affinities lie with the Arachnomorpha, but the relationships with other known taxa remain ambiguous.