Sharks and other Fishes

Lang de

Accummulations of bones, teeth, and scales in countless ‘bone beds‘ provide evidence of the highly diverse fish faunas in the Muschelkalk Sea and the Lower Keuper waters. However, not every species was described from articulated skeletons, but rather from isolated bones, teeth, or scales, which are intermingled in the bone beds as a puzzle with many parts lacking. Among the cartilaginous fishes (Elasmobranchia), the hybodont sharks with either multicuspid or flat crushing teeth for hard food dominate. The most diverse group are the ray-finned Actinopterygia with the primitive Palaeopterygia, most of which have thick ganoid scales forming a flexible external skeleton. The lobe-finned fishes (Sarcopterygia) are represented by lungfish and coelacanths.