Wednesday, December 28, 2011

World’s OLDEST Eyes and FIRST ever fossil from Cambrian Period DISCOVERED.

A 515 million year old fossilised compound eye has been discovered in rocks from an archaeology dig on Kangaroo Island. From a period when it was thought creatures only had very basic vision, an eye similar to the complexity of a modern day arthropod, is one of the greatest fossils finds in modern history.

“There’s about 3000 little lenses all lined up with larger ones in the centre and smaller ones to the periphery,” SA Museum palaeontologist Dr Jim Gehling told 891 Breakfast.

“The only animals that we know of today that do that are arthropods, things like crayfish and crabs and your regular house flies.”

The fossil is believed to come from the Cambrian era, from 540 to 510 million years ago, when the ‘first real explosion of life’ evolved.

“This is a creature which probably had quite good vision for a marine creature.”

The fossil is the first of its kind from the Cambrian period to be discovered in the world.

The eye fossil was not discovered until Dr Gehling’s colleague Dr Jim Jago showed him a rock that contained a different type of fossil that the eye was discovered.

For more interesting topics related to archaeology, visit archaeology excavations.

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