Anomalocaridids are a group of marine animals known mainly from the Cambrian Period, around 500 million years ago. They had segmented exoskeletons, eyes on stalks, and grasping “great appendages” for feeding. Anomalocaridids were among the largest animals in the Cambrian, and most were apex predators.
Peytoia (originally known as Laggania cambria) is an anomalocaridid found in the Burgess Shale, a renowned fossil deposit in the Canadian Rockies. Many of its body parts were originally found separately. The mouth was once thought to be a jellyfish, while the body was first classified as a sponge. Peytoia was smaller than other predatory anomalocaridids - probably under one foot in length - and may have used its great appendages to filter feed.
Length: 16 inches