Loelich, Alfred R., Jr. Department of Earth and Space Sciences, University of California, Los Angeles, California.
Hallock, Pamela College of Marine Science, University of South Florida, St. Petersburg, Florida.
Last reviewed:February 2017
Show previous versions
- Shell morphology
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
A genus of unicellular shelled foraminifers (family Nummulitidae). Members of the genus Nummulites (termed nummulites) are single-celled protoctists (protozoa) of the Foraminifera taxon (which is typically regarded as a phylum or subphylum, depending on the exact classification scheme). There are both extinct and living nummulites. The shells of Nummulites (see illustration) and other large, internally complex foraminifers commonly occurred in rock-forming abundances on continental shelves and around oceanic islands throughout subtropical and tropical regions during the Cenozoic. Resulting limestones are important hydrocarbon reservoirs, especially from the Philippines and Indonesia westward to Trinidad and Venezuela. Nummulitic limestones have been used as building materials around the Mediterranean region; for example, the pyramids of Egypt were constructed of blocks of Eocene age. Nummulite shells are useful stratigraphic and paleoenvironmental indicators, and the extinct species are notable index fossils; the Paleogene was formerly known as the Nummulitic Period. See also: Cenozoic; Extinction (biology); Foraminiferida; Index fossil; Limestone; Protozoa
The content above is only an excerpt.
for your institution. Subscribe
To learn more about subscribing to AccessScience, or to request a no-risk trial of this award-winning scientific reference for your institution, fill in your information and a member of our Sales Team will contact you as soon as possible.
to your librarian. Recommend
Let your librarian know about the award-winning gateway to the most trustworthy and accurate scientific information.
AccessScience provides the most accurate and trustworthy scientific information available.
Recognized as an award-winning gateway to scientific knowledge, AccessScience is an amazing online resource that contains high-quality reference material written specifically for students. Contributors include more than 9000 highly qualified scientists and 43 Nobel Prize winners.
MORE THAN 8700 articles covering all major scientific disciplines and encompassing the McGraw-Hill Encyclopedia of Science & Technology and McGraw-Hill Yearbook of Science & Technology
115,000-PLUS definitions from the McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms
3000 biographies of notable scientific figures
MORE THAN 19,000 downloadable images and animations illustrating key topics
ENGAGING VIDEOS highlighting the life and work of award-winning scientists
SUGGESTIONS FOR FURTHER STUDY and additional readings to guide students to deeper understanding and research
LINKS TO CITABLE LITERATURE help students expand their knowledge using primary sources of information