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|Researchers found more than 1,500 fossils of marine creatures, such as this cheloniellid arthropod, that lived nearly 500 million years ago.
CREDIT: Peter Van Roy/Yale University.
PYRAMID SIZE 89X 80X 78 MM
A discovery of a huge number of soft-bodied marine animal fossils is giving these critters a fair shake in the fossil record.
Paleontologists found more than 1,500 soft-bodied marine animal fossils, some dating to nearly 500 million years ago. The discovery provides a more complete understanding of marine life at that time and suggests that these soft-bodied sea animals did not die off during a major extinction event during the Cambrian period, as previously thought.
Fossils of soft-bodied animals are a rare find because squishy body parts tend not to hold up as well as hard shells and bones over time, wearing away before they can leave an impression. On the coattails of the famous Cambrian Explosion (around 530 million years ago) — which saw the establishment of all the major animal groups and the development of complex ecosystems — was the Great Ordovician Biodiversification Event (around 490 million years ago). During this event, an explosion of marine animal life over a period of 25 million years occurred.
|Starts||25th Jul 2017 6:02pm PDT|
|Ends||26th Jul 2017 6:00pm PDT|
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