• ammonites;
  • Early Jurassic;
  • black band;
  • false colour patterns;
  • shell growth

Abstract:  Thin, radiating, darker bands occur on pyritic internal moulds of the Early Jurassic ammonites Oxynoticeras and Cheltonia from Bishop’s Cleeve, Gloucestershire. They closely resemble true colour patterns preserved in Early Jurassic Calliphylloceras from Kutch, India, and false colour patterns reported in Carboniferous and Triassic ammonoids. Up to five dark bands occur within the body chamber, suggesting that they do not represent serially repeated anatomical structures, but the same feature repeatedly formed during growth. Dark bands are interpreted as traces of black bands deposited on the inside of the shell at the aperture during pauses in growth. The angles between dark bands and between septa correlate strongly in Cheltonia, suggesting that pauses in growth coincided with septal secretion during the chamber formation cycle. There are, however, no other indications that growth was episodic in either genus.