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Susan Turner and thelodonts

Thelodonts are an extinct group of jawless fish. Some, like Thelodus parvidens found near Nerepis, New Brunswick resembled sharks. Small scales or denticles covered the body of Thelodus. Although the first fish fossils were found here in the late 1800s, thelodonts were not discovered until a hundred years later.  Even though the thelodont from this fossil site might be the largest of its kind at about one-metre long, the fossil remains consist of tiny denticles preserved in concretions. Dr. Sue Turner, a thelodont specialist reexamined the site in the 1990s with New Brunswick palaeontologist Dr. Randall Miller. They recovered a single sample with denticles preserved. It was enough to allow Turner to reconfirm the presence of thelodonts in New Brunswick. The concretions might be coprolities (fossil poop) and they wondered what could have eaten a metre-long fish. One possibility would be metre-long giant sea scorpions that first appeared in the Silurian Period. However no sea scorpions fossils had been found. In 2007 Miller and sea scorpion specialist Dr. Erik Tetlie discovered that a fossil described by George Matthew in the 1800s as a crab-like animal was actually a small part of a giant sea scorpion.