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Platyceramus
Temporal range: Cretaceous
800px-Platyceramus platinus with Pseudoperna congesta, Gove County, Kansas, USA, Late Cretaceous - Royal Ontario Museum - DSC00063.jpg
A cast of a Platyceramus platinus fossil
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Mollusca
Class: Bivalvia
Subclass: Pteriomorphia
Order: Praecardioida
Family: Inoceramidae
Genus: Platyceramus
Heinz, 1932
Referred species
  • Platyceramus cycloides (Wegner, 1905)
  • Platyceramus platinus (Logan, 1898)

Platyceramus is an extinct genus of Cretaceous bivalve molluscs belonging to the extinct inoceramid lineage. It is sometimes classified as a subgenus of Inoceramus.

Size

The largest and best known species is Platyceramus platinus. Individuals of this species typically reached 1 m (3 ft 3 in) or more in axial length, but fossil specimens 3 m (nearly 10 feet) long have been found, making it the largest known bivalve. Its huge but very thin shell often provided shelter for schools of small fish, some of which became trapped and fossilised themselves. The outer shell often provided habitat for its own juveniles, also for oysters such as the epizootic oyster Pseudoperna congesta as shown in the image here, and barnacles.

Shells containing pearls have also been discovered.

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