Bryozoa (Phylum Polyzoa)

© Craven & Pendle Geological Society


Class Gymnolaemata
The Bryozoa are exclusively a colonial animals, the majority of which exist or existed in marine environments.  The colonies consist of numerous small tubes.  The soft parts of the animal is made up of a mouth, gut and anus.  The first bryozoan occurred in the Lower Ordovician and have persisted to present day.  Fenestella belongs to the Class Gymnolaemata which died out at the end Permian.

Fenestella is particularly abundant in Coplow Quarry, Clitheroe along with a diverse assemblage of crinoids, gastropods and corals.  Fenestella is commonly described as fan-shaped or 'lace-bryozoan' being characterised by a large number of radiating slender branches linked by thinner cross-bars or dissepiments.