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• Geological Age: Upper Pliocene period, 3.6 million years old
• Location: Western Sahara Desert, Morocco
• Family: Echinoderm
• Species: Heliophora orbicularis
Hiliophara orbicularis fossil echinoid specimens belonging to the sand dollar family, these samples are dated to the upper Pliocene period, over 3 million years old and were found in the Western Sahara Dessert outcrops. Measuring 25 mm in size, these disc like echinoderms are well known due to their finger like protrusions. They come supplied in a magnifier box with a label.
Heliophora orbicularis is a strange, yet mesmerising species of echinoid, this particular sub species is the only known one to belong to the heliophora genus. They are easily identifiable due to their finger like protrusions, jutting outward from one side of the animal. They belong to the sand dollar family due to their relatively flat, disc like shape and are also known as the 'West African Sand Dollar'. Their distinct appearance is highly variable among individual specimens in terms of over all shape and size. These particular samples have been mostly cleaned and prepped so that features on the surface of the body can be viewed as well as the 'fingers'. They are a beige colour and measure roughly 25 mm in size and some supplied in a magnifier box with a label, for easier viewing.