Lycoptera

Name: Lycoptera.
Phonetic: Ly-cop-teh-rah.
Named By: Müller‭ ‬-‭ ‬1847.
Synonyms: Prolebias.
Classification: Chordata,‭ ‬Actinopterygii,‭ ‬Teleostei,‭ ‬Osteoglossomorpha,‭ ‬Lycopteriformes,‭ ‬Lycopteridae.
Species: L.‭ ‬davidi,‭ ‬L.‭ ‬fragilis,‭ ‬L.‭ ‬fuxinensis,‭ ‬L.‭ ‬longicephalus,‭ ‬L.‭ ‬lunteensis,‭ ‬L.‭ ‬middendorffi‭ (‬type‭)‬,‭ ‬L.‭ ‬muroii,‭ ‬L.‭ ‬polyspondylus,‭ ‬L.‭ ‬sankeyushuensis,‭ ‬L.‭ ‬sinensis,‭ ‬L.‭ ‬tokunagai.‭ ‬Note,‭ ‬other species have been named,‭ ‬and are often treated as also valid by some sources.
Diet: Insectivore/Carnivore.
Size: A few centimetres long depending upon the species.
Known locations: China,‭ ‬Korea,‭ ‬Mongolia and Siberia.
Time period: Late Jurassic to Early Cretaceous.
Fossil representation: Thousands of individuals,‭ ‬literally so numerous no one knows how many there are.

       Lycoptera is a genus of small freshwater fish that seems to have been very common throughout Asia during the Late Jurassic and early Cretaceous periods.‭ ‬It is because of this abundance that Lycoptera is often used as an index fossil.‭ ‬What this means is that identifying the presence of Lycoptera in a specimen is enough for palaeontologists to identify the age of a fossil‭ ‬bearing rock to some point between the Late Jurassic and Early Cretaceous.‭ ‬By identifying the species and comparing them to other index fossils,‭ ‬an even more accurate age estimate can be obtained.‭ ‬This of course all depends upon the correct identification of the index fossils in the first place as an incorrect identification can cause wider problems,‭ ‬as happened with the naming of the dinosaur Raptorex.

Further reading
-‭ ‬The affinities of the fish Lycoptera middendorffi.‭ ‬-‭ ‬Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History‭ ‬51‭ (‬8‭)‬.‭ ‬-‭ ‬Theodore Dru Alison Cockerell‭ ‬-‭ ‬1922.
-‭ ‬On the horizon of Protopteryx and the early vertebrate fossil assemblages of the Jehol Biota.‭ ‬Chinese Science Bulletin,‭ ‬53‭(‬18‭)‬:‭ ‬2820-2827.‭ ‬-‭ ‬F.‭ ‬Jin,‭ ‬F.‭ ‬C.‭ ‬Zhang,‭ ‬Z.‭ ‬H.‭ ‬Li,‭ ‬J.‭ ‬Y.‭ ‬Zhang,‭ ‬C.‭ ‬Li‭ & ‬Z.‭ ‬H.‭ ‬Zhou‭ ‬-‭ ‬2008.



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