Fossil Squid | Plesioteuthis prisca | Solnhofen, Germany
Specimen approx. size: 11"
Matrix approx. size: 17.5" x 8.5" x 1"
Plesioteuthis is an extinct genus of squids, belonging to the family Plesioteuthididae. This genus was first described in 1859, and its fossils were discovered in the well-known Solnhofen field in Germany. They were fast-moving carnivores living in lagoons, shallow subtidal waters, and reefs. These animals were very similar to the cuttlefish of today, but they had a thinner, more stream-lined body. In fossils the gladius, or pen, is usually crushed or flattened, so as to hide the small stabilizers present towards the back. Traces of the tentacles are often preserved. Sometimes there are traces of the beak and mouth. The ink-sack, the darker colored organ in the middle of the body, is also often preserved.