Amplectobelua is an extinct genus of anomalocaridid, a group of very early marine animals. While completely different from any animal alive today, some scientists do believe that the very primitive anomalocarids were in fact somewhat related to arthropods. They are placed in their own taxon, the Dinocarida, which they may share with the five-eyed Opabinia, another extremely odd-looking Cambrian marine animal.

Compared to other anomalocarids, Amplectobelua is smaller and more compact (although still much bigger than most, if not all other animals of its time). It had big eyes, which were positioned laterally of the mouth, and several extended lobes on both sides of its segmented body, used for swimming. It had a pair long, feeler-like cerci that extended from the posterior end of the body, and two claw-like appendages on the front of its face. The latter were probably used to capture prey and deliver it to Amplectobelua's mouth, located at the bottom of its face. It is believed to be a carnivore and feeding on triobites


Fossil Museum

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