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      Functional morphology of the prosoma of Baltoeurypterus tetragonophthalmus (Fischer) (Chelicerata: Eurypterida)

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          Abstract

          The prosomal morphology ofBaltoeurypterus tetragonophthalmus(Fischer) from the Baltic Silurian is redescribed and reconstructed. The first eurypterid labrum and new secondary sexual characters ofBaltoeurypterusare described. The radially-arranged coxae ofBaltoeurypteruswere capable of adduction and abduction for food mastication, but not promotor-remotor movements for locomotion. Joint diagrams are presented for the first time for an extinct arthropod. Promotion and remotion of the limbs occurred about subvertical trochanteral pivots, as in all other chelicerates except xiphosurans.Baltoeurypterusprobably walked in a “slow” gait; a method of choosing possible gaits for extinct arthropods is outlined. Swimming inBaltoeurypteruswas effected by means of a rowing action of the posterior limb pair, which is provided with complex joints for collapsing the paddle during the recovery stroke. The limb arrangement and joint mechanisms ofBaltoeurypterusare intermediate between those of the xiphosurans and the arachnids. It is possible that a sister relationship exists between the eurypterids and some arachnid groups, which would render Merostomata and Arachnida unnatural assemblages.

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          Most cited references41

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          The evolution of arthropodan locomotory mechanisms

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            Kinematics of swimming of penguins at the Detroit Zoo

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              Locomotory patterns and external morphology of the river otter, sea otter, and harp seal (Mammalia).

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                Author and article information

                Journal
                applab
                Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh: Earth Sciences
                Transactions of the Royal Society of Edinburgh: Earth Sciences
                Cambridge University Press (CUP)
                0263-5933
                1473-7116
                January 1981
                November 2011
                : 72
                : 01
                : 9-48
                Article
                10.1017/S0263593300003217
                0991939b-7f47-4044-bce7-2d7cab23c924
                © 1981
                History

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