Trilobite eggs in New York

Trilobite eggs in New York

Despite a plethora of exceptionally preserved trilobites, trilobite reproduction has remained a mystery. No previously described trilobite has had unambiguous eggs or genitalia preserved. This study by Thomas A. Hegna and colleagues reports the first occurrence of in situ preserved trilobite eggs from the Lorraine Group in upstate New York, USA.

Like other exceptionally preserved trilobites from the Lorraine Group, the complete exoskeletons are replaced with pyrite. The eggs are spherical to elliptical in shape and nearly 200 micrometers in size.

The location of the eggs is consistent with where modern female horseshoe crabs release their unfertilized eggs from the ovarian network within their head. Trilobites likely released their eggs and sperm through a genital pore of as-yet-unknown location (but probably near the posterior boundary of the head).

Because pyrite preferentially preserves the external features of fossils, there is probably a bias in the fossil record toward the preservation of arthropods that brood eggs externally. If the reproductive biology of these trilobites is representative of other trilobites, they likely spawned with external fertilization as well, which may be the ancestral mode of reproduction for early arthropods.



Add Comment

all comments

  Other news

more
Engineers design a robotic gripper for cleaning up space debris

Engineers design a robotic gripper for cleaning up space debris..

28-Jun, 16:44

Right now, about 500,000 pieces of human-made debris are whizzing around...

Victoria and David Beckham wear coordinating outfits at son Brooklyn's book launch

Victoria and David Beckham wear coordinating outfits at son Brooklyn's book launch..

28-Jun, 07:06

hellofashion.com / Read more about: Victoria Beckham David...

Holly Willoughby's favourite nail polish revealed - get the details!

Holly Willoughby's favourite nail polish revealed - get the details!..

28-Jun, 12:18

The This Morning presenters nails are just as immaculate as her dress...

China woman faints after breaking jade bracelet in jewellery shop

China woman faints after breaking jade bracelet in jewellery shop..

28-Jun, 09:54

She came round after other customers who had rushed to help pinched her...

Insurer Anthem opens hole in Ohio ACA exchange choices

Insurer Anthem opens hole in Ohio ACA exchange choices..

06-Jun, 14:54

One of the nation's biggest health insurers says it will not return to...

First Love Again Episode 49

First Love Again Episode 49..

03-Feb, 11:08

The following First Love Again Episode 49 English Sub has been released....

Trump Plan for Tax on Mexico Exports Raises Eyebrows in Asia

Trump Plan for Tax on Mexico Exports Raises Eyebrows in Asia..

27-Jan, 01:26

Talk of a possible 20 percent tax on U.S. imports from Mexico is raising...

Miss USA says health care 'should be a right'

Miss USA says health care 'should be a right'..

16-May, 08:40

Newly-crowned Miss USA Kara McCullough clarified her remarks on health...