Australian Crinoids in Matrix
Early Permian - Late Artinskian
Cundlego Formation, Gascoyne Junction, Northwest Territories, Australia
A superb multiple crinoid plate illustrating marine life in the Permian, this block of prehistoric sea floor displays four complete specimens, plus additional partial crinoids, beautifully prepared in high relief. 260 million years ago, these individuals anchored themselves to the sea bottom and used their arm-like tentacles to capture small prey. Commonly called sea lilies because of their resemblance to plants, crinoids are echinoderms belonging to the same group as starfish, brittle stars, sea cucumbers, sand dollars and sea urchins. Modern relatives live chiefly in tropical waters. This slab of ancient sea floor illustrates the abundance of marine life during the Permian Period.
Matrix measures 13 x 11 ½ x 3in; Largest specimen measures 5in