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A newly discovered fossil site in China is a treasure trove for paleontologists studying the Cambrian explosion

April 3, 2019

An undescribed species of Leanchoilia, an arthropod, from the Qingjiang fossil site.

Credit: FU ET AL

 

 

A newly discovered fossil site in China is a treasure trove for paleontologists studying the Cambrian explosion, when life on Earth suddenly and massively expanded in diversity about 550 million years ago.

 

More than 2,000 specimens were found at the 518 million-year-old site  and more than half the species they represent are animals that scientists had never seen before.

 

Click here to see the article

 


New soft-bodied taxa from the Qingjiang biota

(A) Medusoid cnidarian, showing radially symmetrical body plan, exumbrellar/subumbrellar surfaces (Eu/Su), manubrium (Ma), and tentacles (Te). (B) Polypoid cnidarian, showing oral disc and mouth (Mo), tentacles, column, and pedal disc (Pd). (C) Ctenophore, showing that comb rows and oral-aboral body axis have a biradial symmetry resulting from sheathed tentacles. (D) Branched alga, showing quadripartite thallus. (E) Sponge Leptomitella sp. (F) New chordate. (G) Yunnanozoon sp.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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