Virtual Museum of Canada

Miguasha : From water to land (The Miguasha National Park)


Just west of the main section of Miguasha’s fossil-rich cliff is an area known to local inhabitants as Pointe à Fleurant.Reconstruction of the dipnoan Fleurantia denticulatamagnifying(40 kb) It is from this place that the second dipnoan fish species found at Miguasha, Fleurantia denticulata, derives its name.

Confused for several decades with specimens of Scaumenacia curta, this rare species was only properly identified in 1937. Despite their general similarity, certain features allow them to be distinguished fairly easily.

Fleurantia denticulatamagnifying(92 kb)The head of Fleurantia is more elongate, or more precisely, its snout is more slender. Its teeth were not completely fused to form dental plates, as in other dipnoi. Instead, specimens display conical denticles arranged in rows on the palate, hence the species name denticulata.

Though it was as well equipped as Scaumenacia in terms of fins, Fleurantia’s epicercal tail was trinagular with a lower lobe pointed donwward, rather than being narrow and rounded. Its main dorsal fin was distinctively tall and upright. And the small grooves on its scales were straighter than the slightly sinuous grooves of Scaumenacia.

Reconstruction of the dipnoan Fleurantia denticulata

Title: Reconstruction of the dipnoan Fleurantia denticulata
Author: Illustration by François Miville-Deschênes
Sources: Parc national de Miguasha
Year: 2003

Fleurantia denticulata had a distinctively long snout. It is a rare species within the Escuminac Formation.

Fleurantia denticulata

Title: Fleurantia denticulata
Author: Parc national de Miguasha
Sources: Parc national de Miguasha
Year: 2002

An almost complete specimen of the species.