Burgessochaeta fossil from the Burgess Shale - ROM2007_9581_5

Burgess Shale fossil, Burgessochaeta setigera

Burgessochaeta fossil from the Burgess Shale

Geography: Canada, British Columbia: Yoho National Park, Greater Phyllopod Bed, Walcott Quarry Shale Member on Fossil Ridge, Burgess Shale Formation
Date: 1994
    • Attributes
    • Objects
    • Taxonomy
    • Kingdom: Animalia
    • Phylum: Annelida
    • Class: Polychaeta
    • Genus: Burgessochaeta
    • SpecificEpithet: setigera
Object number: 61042
Not on view
DescriptionThis nearly complete specimen represents the annelid worm, Burgessochaeta setigera. The head is on the left, and bunches of needle like elements called chaetae are visible along the sides of the body. Chaetae are typical of a group of annelid worms called the bristle worms. This group is still common in tropical environments today. Burgessochaeta was the most common polychaete worm in the Walcott Quarry. It probably lived in burrows digesting small particulate matter from the mud. The gut is visible and is represented by the dark area along the length of the body. Some gut contents have seeped outside the body (the vertical black thread-like structure on the right-hand side below the animal) after the death and burial of the specimen.
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