An invertebrate is an animal without a backbone. This group includes 95% of all animal species.



                Because of their large numbers and great diversity I've arranged the phylum mollusca by class. Typically the phylum is divided into seven classes.
The New Jersey fossil record provides us with examples from four of the seven classes.

Skip Mollusca


Phylum: Mollusca (Linnaeus, 1758)

Mollusks have more varied forms than any other animal phylum. Despite this amazing diversity, all mollusks share some unique characteristics. The body has a head, a foot and a visceral mass. This is all covered with a mantle that typically secretes the shell. In some groups, like slugs and octopuses, the mantle is lost, while in others, it is used for other activities, such as respiration.

Class:  Gastropoda (Cuvier, 1795)



Common name -  gastropod

Gastropods are one of the most diverse groups of animals and by far the largest group in the mollusca phylum.



Class: Bivalvia (Linnaeus, 1758)



Common name - clam

Clam is a common name for several kinds of bivalve molluscs. The term is often applied only to those that live partially buried in the sand.




Order: Ostreoida (Férussac, 1822)

Common name - oysters

The oyster shell is made up of two unequal valves, the upper one flat (right) and the lower convex (left).



Order: Pectinoida (Gray, 1854)

Common name - scallop

One of very few groups of bivalves to be primarily free-living, with many species capable of rapidly swimming short distances



Class: Scaphopoda (Bronn, 1862)



Family: Gadilidae (Stoliczka, 1868)
Family: Dentaliidae (Children, 1834)

Common name - tusk shell

Marine molluscs with a tapering tubular shell, that is open at both ends.

The class scaphopoda is represented by only two families,


Class: Cephalopoda (Cuvier 1798)



Order: Belemnitida (Gray, 1849)

Common name - belemnite

Very similar in many ways to the modern squid and closely related to the modern cuttlefish. In New Jersey the belemnite guard is usually amber colored, due to absorption of iron.




Order: Ammonitida (Hyatt 1889)

Common name - ammonite

Ammonites are perhaps the most widely known fossil, typically possessing a spiral-type shell.




Order: Ammonitida (Hyatt 1889)
Family: Baculitidae (Gill, 1871)
Genus: Baculites (Lamarck, 1799)

Common name - baculite or walking stick

Baculites are a straight shelled type of ammonite



invertebrates continued

Choristothyris sp.
Oleneothyris harlani
Very Common


Location Specific Under Construction
Clawed lobster
Hoploparia gabbi
Ghost Shrimp
Mesostylus mortoni aka
Protocallianassa mortoni
Uncommon Very Common micro

Sea Urchins

Boring Sponge
Cliona cretacica

The Cretaceous Corals

Uncommon Uncommon


Uncommon Uncommon


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