Albumares brunsae is a tri-radially symmetrical fossil animal that lived in the late Ediacaran (Vendian) seafloor. It is a member of the extinct group Trilobozoa.
The generic name Albumares derives from the Latin Mare Album (White Sea). The specific name honors Elizabeth P. Bruns, an early 20th-century Russian geologist noted for her extensive and important research of the Upper Precambrian stratigraphy of European Russia.
Fossils of the Albumares brunsae are known from deposits on the Verkhovka formation on the Syuzma River in Onega Peninsula of the White Sea, Arkhangelsk Region, Russia. There are reports about Albumares sp. from the Rawnslay Quartzite, Flinders Ranges in the South Australia, but photographs or description of these fossils were not presented.
Reconstruction and affinity Edit
Albumares was originally described by Mikhail Fedonkin as a free-swimming scyphozoan jellyfish. The branched furrows on the fossil were interpreted as imprints of a system of internal radial canals and tentacles along the outer margin of the fossil, with the three oval ridges described as imprints of mouth lobes or gonades.
Later, with the discovery of the closely related Anfesta and with their seeming affinities to Tribrachidium, Fedonkin appointed these animals to the Trilobozoa , an extinct group of the tri-radially symmetrical coelenterate-like animals that only superficially resembled cnidarians. Originally, Trilobozoa was established as a class in the phylum Coelenterata, but since Coelenterata has been divided into two separate phyla, Cnidaria and Ctenophora, Trilobozoa itself has been promoted to the rank of phylum.
According to the latest research, Albumates was a soft-bodied benthic organism that temporarily attached (but did not adhere) to the substrate of its habitat (microbial mats). This fossil is an imprint of the upper side of the animal's body, with some elements of its external and internal anatomy. The branched furrows on the fossil are imprints of radial grooves on the surface of the animal, while the three ridges in the central part of the fossil are imprints of cavities within the body. Presumably, this system of grooves and cavities could be related to the collection and digestion of food particles.