• Lower Cambrian;
  • Ocruranus;
  • Eohalobia;
  • morphology;
  • fine structure;
  • carbonate shells;
  • coeloscleritophorans

Lower Cambrian phosphorite samples from Maotianshan, Yunnan Province, South China, yielded a variety of small shelly fossils. Sclerites of the second pre-trilobite faunal assemblage of Meishucun, the Paragbborilus-Siphogonuchites–Lapworthella association of Nemakit–Daldynian to Tommotían age, were dominant. They comprise previously unknown spine-bearing specimens of Ocruranus finial Liu, 1979, and new morphotypes of Eohalobia diandongensis Jiang, 1982. Well-preserved sclerites reveal a laminated, composite fine structure with marginal, incremental growth. Each lamella consists of radial series of minute growth elements. The shells are phosphatically preserved, but micropetrographic evidence from drill-core samples indicates calcium carbonate as primary shell material. In the light of this new evidence, Ocruranus–Eohalobia group fossils are interpreted as parts of coeloscleritophoran scleritomes.