By Monks N., Palmer P.
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Extra resources for Ammonites. London: The Natiral History Museum. 159 p
However, ammonites are not commonly found in deep water sediments, and the majority seem to have inhabited shallow coastal seas between about 50 and zoo m (1G5 and Gso ft). So why did they need to be adapted to deep water, when the modern nautiluses, which live in much deeper water, have shells with very simple sutures. One possible solution to this contradiction is that ammonites did not go into particularly deep water, but by having shell designs that were intrinsically more robust they could make them thinner and lighter than those of nautiluses.
The front view shows four saddles forming a diagonal cross. 44 AMMONITES I I'I I internal lobe inside the coil U umbilical lobe near the umbilicus I L lateral lobe on the flanks E external lobe outside the coil ' I I I E ) external lobe left: The positions of the main lobes in a typical ammonite. below: The suture line of the heteromorph Harnites hybridus. I lateral lobe In general, primitive ammonite groups have relatively fewer folds than more advanced ones. The very earliest ammonites, such as the Anarcestina, have suture lines that are barely distinguishable from those of nautiluses.
The overall process is therefore one of draining water out of the chamber and letting gases passively diffuse in. In this way the nautilus produces a which is large but very light, reducing its overall density and A M M O N I T E FORM A N D FUNCTION 1 59 giving it neutral buoyancy. Of course, as the nautilus grows in size it must compensate for its increase in weight, but there are otherwise no limitations on the potential size of the animal provided it can keep adding and emptylng new chambers.
Ammonites. London: The Natiral History Museum. 159 p by Monks N., Palmer P.