By Joseph “Paleo Joe” Kchodl
DICRANURUS elegantus is a very highly ornamented spiny Devonian trilobite species. It has very long and flowing genal, thoracic and pygidial spines.
Preparation of this trilobite preserved in limestone is very painstaking and time consuming. The pygidium ends in two very short tail spines. The Cephalon also bears a unique set of “Rams Horn” curved occipital spines rising up from the glabella.
These spines are often found crushed down on top of the thorax. It is quite special to find one with the spines intact and set high off the cephalon. When found these trilobites need to be prepared professionally. The body is generally 1 inch long but with the spines they can reach external dimensions of 2 inches. Found in the area of Clarita, Oklahoma.
About the columnist: Joseph “PaleoJoe” Kchodl is a paleontologist, educator, veteran, author, fossil dig organizer/guide, business owner, husband, father, and grandfather, and fossil fanatic. For decades, he’s spent hours in classrooms around the Midwestern United States and beyond, speaking to school children about fossils and fossil hunting. Visit his site to purchase fossils, contact PaleoJoe, visit www.paleojoe.com.
Plus, learn more about PaleoJoe and his daughter PaleoJen and their paleontology exploration partnership in an the article “Fueling a Passion for Paleontology”.