Ancient Seas, Middle Eocene, Lutetian Stage, ca. 45 million years ago. A well-prepared, fossilized specimen of Harpactocarcinus, an extinct genus of mud crabs who lived from the Cretaceous to the Miocene and have been found across the world - in Iran, Europe, Mexico, the United States, and New Zealand. Size of full specimen on matrix: 9.5" L x 6.6" W x 3.75" H (24.1 cm x 16.8 cm x 9.5 cm); size of exposed crab: 5.7" L x 7" W x 1.2" H (14.5 cm x 17.8 cm x 3 cm)
The crab is shown in a lifelike pose, with the chelae (claws) projecting outward, largely free from matrix, and with the teeth inside the jaws well preserved. The gaping mouth is clear below the hard carapace. With his lower body sunk into sandy matrix, you can easily imagine this fellow in his natural habitat, half-buried in sand at the floor of a bay, feeding on algae and worms.
Provenance: Ex-Private Buenos Aires Collection
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