Comparative study of Cambrian lobopods Miraluolishania and Luolishania
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- Liu, J., Shu, D., Han, J. et al. Chin. Sci. Bull. (2008) 53: 87. doi:10.1007/s11434-007-0428-1
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The rare fossil Miraluolishania described by Liu et al. from the Lower Cambrian Chengjiang Lagerstätte in 2004 is regarded as an arthropod sphinx because it bears mosaic features of both lobopods and arthropods. The discovery of this rare transitional form offers direct fossil evidence for exploring the relationship between lobopods and arthropods. However, some scientists consider Miraluolishania to be a junior synonym of Luolishania because the former superficially resembles the latter in general appearance. Considering the significant differences between the two taxa, a thorough comparative study of Miraluolishania and Luolishania leads to the conclusion that there are definitely two different genera. Nevertheless, the “Luolishania” of the Haikou area is indeed “Miraluolishania”, whereas Luolishania is most likely the typical genus of the Maotianshan area of Chengjiang County.