Rare Pyritized Trilobite with gut tract!

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This is an exceptional Triarthrus eatoni from the Whetstone Gulf Formation in Lewis County, New York.

There are only a few locations in the world where trilobites are preserved with soft body parts and not just an empty shell. It is even rarer to find soft body preservation with pyrite (iron sulphide or fool’s gold). Preservation of pyritized trilobites with their legs, gills and antennae happened under extremely specialized environmental conditions. The trilobites were rapidly buried in mud which was low in organic matter, lacked oxygen but were rich in highly reactive iron.

The mudstone bed where these gorgeous trilobites were collected is only about 4 – 10 centimeters thick! Likely, future specimens of pyritized trilobites with soft body preservation will be extremely difficult to find in this thin fossil bearing layer of the formation. Don’t miss out on their opportunity to get one of these unique treasures of the fossil world.

    Specimen measures 11 millimetres. Another rare feature of this fossil is the preservation of the gut trace running down the middle of the thorax. It is preserved ventrally (from the underside).

    Learn more about pyritized Triarthrus trilobites, including how they are discovered and prepared. Find out interesting general facts about trilobite fossils here. Follow this link to learn how fossils become pyritized.