Sirius Passet

Cambrian Lagerstätte in Greenland

Sirius Passet is a special fossil site, a Cambrian lagerstätte in Greenland. It is from six places on the eastern shore of a fjord in the far north of Greenland.[1] It was discovered in 1984. About 10,000 fossil specimens have been collected so far.

The fauna is just before that of the Burgess Shale, probably ten to fifteen million years older – 518 vs. 505 mya.[2] There were no vertebrates at that time: all the animals were invertebrates.

The fauna includes some arthropods and sponges, and rare representatives of other groups. A polychaete annelid from the Sirius Passet was described in 2008.[3] Polychaete annelids are a significant part of the Burgess Shale fauna, but are otherwise unknown from the other early Cambrian lagerstätten. This single species from a single place improves our knowledge of this group.


  1. Peel J.S. & Ineson J.R. 2011. The extent of the Sirius Passet Lagerstätte (early Cambrian) of North Greenland. Bulletin of Geosciences 535. [1]
  2. Stein, Martin 2010. A new arthropod from the early Cambrian of North Greenland, with a 'great appendage'-like antennula. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 158 (3): 477–500.
  3. Morris S.C. & Peel J.S. 2008. The earliest annelids: lower Cambrian polychaetes from the Sirius Passet lagerstätte, Peary Land, North Greenland. Acta Palaeontologica Polonica 53: 137. [2]