Ontogeny of the eodiscoid trilobite Tsunyidiscus acutus from the Lower Cambrian of South China



Abstract:  The morphology and ontogeny of the eodiscid trilobite Tsunyidiscus acutus Sun is described on the basis of numerous calcified specimens collected from the Lower Cambrian Shuijingtuo Formation in Yichang and Changyang, Hubei Province, South China. An ontogenetic series is established based on the articulated material including the previously unknown protaspides and meraspides (degrees 0 and 1). The material, revealing some prominent morphological changes such as the number of pygidial axial rings, genal spines retained throughout ontogeny and pygidial pleurae from furrowed to unfurrowed, enables a discussion on the trunk segmentation schedule, indicating that somitogenesis and tagmosis occurred independently during the ontogenetic development of T. acutus.