A New Cirolanid Isopod (Crustacea) from the Cretaceous of Lebanon: Dermoliths Document the Pre-Molt Condition01/01/2009
Discovery of a single specimen of cirolanid isopod from the Late Cretaceous of Lebanon permits definition of a new species, Cirolana garassinoi. Preservation with the ventral surface exposed is unique among isopod fossils. The evidence of a thin, apparently transparent cuticle and three pairs of dermoliths suggests that the specimen died while in the pre-molt condition. The ability to sequester calcium and possibly other mineral salts in a marine isopod may indicate a preadaptation to terrestrial lifestyles where the process is common in extant forms.