Skip to content Skip to navigation

Article: New Middle Cambrian bivalved arthropods from the Burgess Shale (British Columbia, Canada)

Publication: Palaeontology
Volume: 57
Part: 4
Publication Date: July 2014
Page(s): 691 711
Author(s): <p>David A. Legg and Jean-Bernard Caron</p>
Addition Information

How to Cite

LEGG, D., CARON, J.-B., 2014, New Middle Cambrian bivalved arthropods from the Burgess Shale (British Columbia, Canada). Palaeontology57, 4, 691–711. doi: 10.1111/pala.12081

Author Information

  • David A. Legg - Department of Earth Science and Engineering, Imperial College London, London, UK (email:
  • David A. Legg - Department of Earth Sciences, Natural History Museum, London, UK
  • David A. Legg - Earth Collections, Oxford University Museum of Natural History, Oxford, UK
  • Jean-Bernard Caron - Department of Natural History (Palaeobiology), Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, Ontario, Canada (email:
  • Jean-Bernard Caron - Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Toronto, 25 Willcocks Street, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Publication History

  • Issue published online: 14 JUL 2014
  • Article first published online: 18 NOV 2013
  • Manuscript Accepted: 5 SEP 2013
  • Manuscript Received: 5 SEP 2012

Funded By

Imperial College London
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council Discovery Grant
Royal Ontario Museum Burgess Shale Research. Grant Number: 47

Online Version Hosted By

Wiley Online Library
Get Article: Wiley Online Library [Pay-to-View Access] |


The morphology of two new bivalved arthropods, Loricicaris spinocaudatus gen. et sp. nov. and Nereocaris briggsi sp. nov. from the middle Cambrian (Series 3, Stage 5) Burgess Shale Formation (Collins Quarry locality on Mount Stephen, Yoho National Park, British Columbia, Canada), is described. The material was originally assigned to the genus Branchiocaris, but exhibits distinctive character combinations meriting its assignment to other taxa. Loricicaris spinocaudatus possesses an elongate and spinose abdomen comparable to the contemporaneous Perspicaris and Canadaspis, as well as chelate second head appendages and subtriangular exopods, comparable to Branchiocaris. Nereocaris briggsi possesses a laterally compressed carapace, elongate and delicate appendages and a medial eye located between a pair of lateral eyes on a rhomboidal eye stalk. Although undoubtedly congeneric with Nereocaris exilis from a slightly younger horizon of the Burgess Shale Formation, N. briggsi differs in overall proportions and segment number, warranting assignment to a new species. The newly described taxa were coded into an extensive cladistic analysis of 755 characters, and 312 extinct and extant panarthropods, including a variety of Cambrian bivalved arthropods from both the Burgess Shale and the Chengjiang Lagerstätten. Cambrian bivalved arthropods consistently resolved as a paraphyletic assemblage at the base of Arthropoda. Important innovations in arthropod history such as the specialization of the deutocerebral head appendages and a shift from a nekton-benthic deposit feeding habit to a benthic scavenging/predatory habit, the symplesiomorphic feeding condition of Euarthropoda (crown-group arthropods), were found to have occurred among basal bivalved arthropods.

PalAss Go! URL: | Twitter: Share on Twitter | Facebook: Share on Facebook | Google+: Share on Google+