Australia: The Land Where Time Began

A biography of the Australian continent 

Ediacaran Fauna (Vendian Fauna) - by location - Australia

  • Charniodiscus arboreus, a frond-like Ediacaran fossil from the Ediacaran Member, Rawnsley Quartzite, Bunyeroo Gorge, Flinders Ranges, South Australia. Newfoundland specimen. Wikipedia
  • Parvanocorina. This animal is almost triangular, about 2 cm in diameter. The animal is bisected into 2 equal parts by a central furrow. Parallel to one long curving edge there is another furrow. It has been suggested that it may be au arthropod, based on its similarity to arthropods.
  • Spriggina. It was about 3 cm long with a crescent-shaped head and many segments that tapered to the posterior end. It was originally thought to be an annelid worm, but later work suggests it may be an arthropod.
  • Tribrachidium. This is one animal that is difficult to assign to known a group. This was a small, disk-shaped animal up to a few cm across. 3 curved grooves radiated out from the centre that has been likened to a 3-armed swastika. It is the only known animal from the entire known history of life that appears to be based on a 3-fold radial symmetry. Some have suggested that it was a dead-end form, giving rise to no descendants. Others have suggested it may be distantly related to cnidarians (corals and anemones), or brachiopods. There is also a suggestion  with a limited following that all the members of the Ediacaran fauna belong to their own unique kingdom that left no lineages leading to modern forms.
  • "Arborea arborea" (holotype) Rawnsley Quartzite, Ediacara Hills, Flinders Ranges, South Australia. (aka Charniodiscus arborea, C. concentricus, Rangea arborea, etc)
  • Arkarua adami (holotype), Chace Range & Devil's Peak, Flinders Ranges, South Australia. Ediacaran member, Rawnsley Quartzite, Wilpena Group. Disc- to hemispherical shape with an opening formed of 5-pointed star-shape of grooves. They have a segmented rim formed by a shallow depression with an outer ridge. and are almost of polygonal shape when flattened. Alchuringa
  • Arumberia banksii Ediacaran and Early Cambrian of Arumbera Sandstone & Central Mt Stuart Formation, Northern Territory, Pound Subgroup & Billy Creek Formation, Flinders Ranges of South Australia; Longmyndian of England and Wales; White Sea, Russia; Urals, Podolia, Ukraine; northern France and the Channel Islands (probably Early Cambrian); Avalon Peninsula, Newfoundland; southern Namibia. Shallow grooves with inner and outer walls separating a series of rectilinear ribs that radiate from a gently sloping elevation.
  • Aspidella terranovica Wikipedia Palaeontology
  • "Beltanella gilesi" Holotype  Peabody Museum of Natural History Earth-Science Reviews
  • Bergaueria sp. Precambrian Research Geological Magazine
  • Brachina delicatea Holotype
  • Charniodiscus arboreus Journal of Paleontology
  • Charniodiscus concentricus
  • Charniodiscus longus Holotype
  • Charniodiscus oppositus
  • Chondroplon bilobatum Holotype
  • Conomedusites lobatus Holotype
  • "Cyclomedusa davidi" Precambrian research
  • "Cyclomedusa gigantea"
  • "Cyclomedusa plana" see Aspidella terranovica
  • Dickinsonia brachina Holotype
  • Dickinsonia costata Dickinsonia costata material from the Ediacaran Hills site in South Australia in the Natural History Museum, Oxford, has found that all the characteristics of the Dickinsonia can be explained by the hypothesis that its body was based on a simple hydraulic system, such as that found in coelenterates, where movement is achieved by changes in turgor pressure in the body
  • "Dickinsonia elongata"
  • Dickinsonia lissa
  • "Dickinsonia minima Holotype
  • Dickinsonia rex Holotype
  • "Dickinsonia spriggi" Holotype
  • Dickinsonia tenuis
  • "Ediacaria flindersi" see Aspidella terranovica
  • Eoporpita medusa
  • Gehlingia dibrachida
  • "Glasneria" plana Cosmopolitan
  • "Glasneria" radiata cosmopolitan
  • "Glasneria" grandis Holotype
  • "Glassnerina longa" Holotype same specimen as (Charniodiscus longus)
  • Hallidaya brueri
  • Hiemalora stellaris
  • Inaria karli Holotype
  • Ivesheadia lobata
  • "Ivesia" lobata see Ivesheadia lobata
  • Kimberella quadrata Holotype
  • Lamosovis malus Holotype
  • "Madigania annulata" Holotype
  • Marywadia ovata Holotype
  • Mawsonites randellensis
  • Mawsonites spriggi Holotype Mawsonites spriggi is one of the most complex appearing of the Ediacaran Fauna. It is about 10 cm in diameter, with the appearance of a jellyfish, a concentric ring of blob-like lobes radiating out from the centre.
  • "Medusina asteroides" see Medusinites asteroides
  • "Medusina filamentus" see Medusinites asteroides
  • "Medusina mawsoni" Holotype
  • Medusinites asteroides
  • Nemiana simplex Holotype
  • Ovatoscutum concentricum Holotype
  • Palaeoscichnus delicatus
  • Palaeophragmodictya reticulata Holotype
  • "Papillionata eryie" Holotype See Dickinsonia costata
  • Parvancorina minchami
  • "Protodipleurosoma wardi" Holotype
  • Protoniobea  wadea Holotype
  • Pseudorhizostomites howchini
  • "Pseudoropilema chapmani" Holotype see Pseudorhizostomites howchini
  • "Pteridinium nenoxa" See Pteridinium simplex
  • Pteridinium simplex
  • "Pteridinium simplex
  • "Rangea arborea" Holotype Same specimen as Arborea arborea, see Charniodiscus arboreus
  • "Rangia grandis" Holotype See Charnia masoni
  • "Rangea longa" Holotype See Ovatoscutum concentricum, same specimen as Glassnerina longa
  • Rugocionites enigmaticus
  • Rugoconites tenuirugosus Holotype
  • Skinnera brooksi Holotype
  • "Spriggia annukata" Holotype See Aspidella terranovica
  • "Spriggia wadea" Holotype See Aspidella terranovica
  • "Spriggina borealis" Holotype
  • Spriggina floundersi
  • "Spriggina ovata" See Marywadia ovata
  • "Tateana inflata" See Aspidella terranovica
  • Tribachidium heraldicum Holotype
  • Vaveliksia vana Holotype
  • Wigwamiella enigmatica Holotype
  • Yorgia waggoneri Holotype

Sources & Further reading

  • Mikhail A. Fodonkin, James G. Gehling, Kathleen Grey, Guy M. Narbonne, Patricia Vickers-Rich, The Rise of Animals, Evolution and Diversification of the Kingdom Animalia, Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, 2007
  • Penny Van Oosterzee, The Centre - The Natural history of Australia's Desert Regions, Reed Australia, 1993
  • Mary E. White, The Nature of Hidden Worlds, Reed, 1993


Author: M. H. Monroe
Last Updated 05/11/2008

Ediacaran Fauna
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