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Knightia eocaena

Knightia eocaena

Temporal occurrence
Paleocene to Eocene
Overcohort : Clupeocephala
Cohort : Otomorpha
Order : Herring-like (Clupeiformes)
Subordination : Clupeoidei
Family : Herring (Clupeidae)
Genre : Knightia
Scientific name
Jordan , 1907

Knightia is an extinct genus of real bony fish from the herrings family, which is best known from fossils from the Eocene Green River Formation in the US state of Wyoming .

Knightia was a freshwater schooling fish with a maximum length of 25 centimeters and an important food for predatory fish . It is always found in masses in fossil form. It is therefore believed that they often fell victim to events such as algal blooms .

The first Knightia fossils were found in the 1840s by missionaries and explorers traveling across the American West to explore Wyoming. The genus was named after the geologist Wilbur Clinton Knight . Knightia is the state fossil of Wyoming.

Rückert-Ülkümen reported in 1994 about a find of Knightia sp. from the Neogene deposits near Süloğlu ( Eastern Thrace , Turkey). This would be the first find in Europe.

The following species are known, K. branneri , K. alta and the type species K. eoceana . "Knightia brasiliensis" from the " Tertiary " of Brazil was placed in the genus Paleopiquitinga by De Figueiredo in 2010 due to anatomical differences .


  • Karl Albert Frickhinger: Fossil Atlas of Fishes. Mergus-Verlag, Melle 1999, ISBN 3-88244-018-X .

Individual evidence

  1. Neriman Rückert-Ülkümen (1994): Knightia sp. and Ctenopharyngodon hermi n. sp. (Vertebrata, Pisces), two new fish from the Tertiary of Edirne, Thrace (Turkey). In: Palaeontological Journal. Volume 68, Issue 3/4, pp. 463–472
  2. Francisco J. De Figueiredo (2010): "Morphological and systematic reassessment of † Knightia brasiliensis Woodward, 1939 (Teleostei: Clupeiformes) from the Pliocene of Parnaíba Basin, northeastern Brazil". In: Zootaxa , 2440: 1-17

Web links

Commons : Knightia  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Live reconstruction of Knightia sp.