New observations on Cucullus Steiner from the Neoproterozoic Doushantuo Formation of Guizhou, South China
Article first published online: 4 NOV 2010
© 2010 The Authors, Lethaia © 2010 The Lethaia Foundation
Volume 44, Issue 3, pages 275–286, September 2011
How to Cite
WANG, Y. and WANG, X. (2011), New observations on Cucullus Steiner from the Neoproterozoic Doushantuo Formation of Guizhou, South China. Lethaia, 44: 275–286. doi: 10.1111/j.1502-3931.2010.00241.x
- Issue published online: 20 JUL 2011
- Article first published online: 4 NOV 2010
- manuscript received on 31/10/2009; manuscript accepted on 14/07/2010.
Wang, Y & Wang, X. 2011: New observations on Cucullus Steiner from the Neoproterozoic Doushantuo Formation of Guizhou, South China. Lethaia, Vol. 44, pp. 275–286.
The Neoproterozoic genus Cucullus is the most abundant and largest organism in the Miaohe biota in China, but has remained poorly understood both in morphology and classification. New material recently obtained from the upper Doushantuo Formation (Ediacaran) of northeastern Guizhou, South China, indicates that Cucullus bears thin organic walls composed of complex spongin fibres forming vertical filaments, which may have given rise to transverse filaments. Filaments, non-mineralized spongin fibres, which may have served to support body, regularly interweave with each other in a body, and form openings on body sides that may have served as incurrent canals. The top pores may have served as excurrent canals. The overall features, including the organic wall, the complex spongin fibre networks, and the possible canal system of Cucullus, suggest a primitive element of the Demospongea. This benthic organism lived in a low-energy, calm environment near or below the storm wave-base with influence of episodic storms. Cucullus’ base nestled into the muddy substrate and its sacciform body floated in seawater. □ Cucullus, Doushantuo Formation, Neoproterozoic, Porifera, South China.