Abstract

Assessment of unique and potentially significant fossils may be considerably compromised by surrounding matrix. This paper assesses a fossil barnacle group from the mid to late Eocene of Seymour Island, off the Antarctic Peninsula, that potentially has very significant phylogenetic importance. It discusses why the specimen could be significant, and describes and applies as a proof of concept an advanced imaging technique, using X-ray Computed Tomography (CT), that was effectively employed to confirm systematic taxonomy with virtual 3-D sections through the specimen. In this case, the Antarctic barnacle's complex internal plate morphologies were resolved by advanced 3-D imaging, such that a taxonomic attribution could be made to either the Archaeobalanidae or Austrobalanidae, excluding the initial assessment of Coronulidae, which would have otherwise been allusive.

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