How to start. As everyone knows this is an extinct fish from the Devonian Age. I guess that doesnt need really explaining since it is a fairly well known thing when people are aware of this fish but just in case. The Devonian Age was around 419.2 million years ago till 358.9 million years ago. A nickname for this age was the Age of Fish since fish species really flourished during this age. The first ray-finned and lobe-finned bony fish appeared. The palcoderms what the Dunkleosteus is part of began to dominate every aquatic enviroment and the ancestors of all four limbed vertebrates were walking on land. While I can go on and on about this Age, I want to focus more on information about the Dunkleosteus themselves and why I identify as the species I do know
While it is easy to say Dunkleosteus can be a single species since one is mostly known, they are actually a genus of placoderms that lived from 358 to 382 million years age. They lived in the stage of the Devonian known as the Late Devonian. There are 10 species known within this genus:
So of course when I discovered that the Dunkleosteus was my kintype, I was also set for a challenge. Which of these 10 was the kintype. Since I only had fossil evidence to go by it was really tough. The species at least on paper looked almost identical and my experiences didnt really give me a big clue at all. Only when I read more about the species gave more confusion till I read that despite the same appearances some had their own features that allowed them to be identified as their own species and some were only known from a plate. I decided to focus more on those were the whole armored fossil was found of. It took some time to really know what was the possible source of my experiences. Research eventually led to 3 species for me: D. terrelli. D. amblyodoratus and D. marsaisi. While at first glance they look alike, D.marsaisi had a narrower snout but was not what I experienced. D. amblyodoratus was estimated to be the same length as D. terrelli but its feature a blunted spearshaped plates in the back of the head was also not something I experienced. D. terrelli was left and really felt the species that was the Dunkleosteus behind the shifts. It's armored head was the same shape I experienced. While I never really had a length of the shifts, I knew that it was it. D. missouriensis was also a good candidate in how similiar it was to terrelli and is thought to be the same length as Terrelli but really never felt I guess a sort of click. Despite Terrelli being the most well known I really felt that animal species really what I was looking for. It just felt right in all ways deep down. I only really experienced the feeling of that is what I am supposed to be with Terrelli only if that are the right words to use. I just couldnt find much at all to say that it was Missouriensis, it just felt wrong when I did consider it more on the side line but really was not a species on my official list for further research. The other 2 species had possible features aside the Terrelli that made it worth considering. But all in all D. terrelli is the species I identify as when I mention my Dunkleosteus kintype. While it might have been the most well known of the entire genus to the public, for me it felt as the species that was my actual kintype.