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Found 56 results

  1. Earth's Magnetic Field Almost Collapsed 565 Million Years Ago Our planet's core probably started solidifying in the late Ediacaran period, which recharged the magnetic field in the nick of time. https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/9kpywp/earths-magnetic-field-collapse-ediacaran-core-solidification https://www.newsweek.com/earth-magnetic-field-collapse-inner-core-solid-geodynamo-solar-wind-1307659 The (paywalled) papers are: Richard K. Bono, John A. Tarduno, Francis Nimmo & Rory D. Cottrell 2019. Young inner core inferred from Ediacaran ultra-low geomagnetic field intensity. Nature Geoscience 12, pages 143–147. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41561-018-0288-0 Peter Driscoll, Geodynamo recharged Nature Geoscience 12, pages 83–84 https://www.nature.com/articles/s41561-019-0301-2 It is strange how so many odd things occurred during the Ediacaran period. One question is how did this along with everything else did or did not affect evolution of plants and animals? Yours, Paul H.
  2. https://phys.org/news/2019-01-thin-layers-sediment-early-life.html
  3. ediacaran finds

    arrodiscoiscyphozoanaturesrep30590.pdf Ediacaran discs from South America:probable soft-bodied macrofossils unlock the paleogeography of the Clymene ocean Maria Julia Arrouy,Lucas V.Warren,Fernanda Quaglio,Daniel Poire ,Marcello Guimares Soares,Milena Boselli Rosa,Lucia E.Gomez Peral * Nature Scientific reports (6) 30590 publ.: 27-7-2016 *all diacritics omitted
  4. 600 Million Years Ago, the First Scavengers Lurked in Dark Ocean Gardens, By Asher Elbein, New York Times https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/30/science/ediacaran-period-predators.html The bizarre organisms of the Ediacaran Period have long puzzled researchers. Fossil discoveries suggest these ecosystems may have been more complicated than once thought. The paper is: James G. Gehling, Mary L. Droser, 2018, Ediacaran scavenging as a prelude to predation. Emerging Topics in Life Sciences. 2 (2) 213-222; DOI: 10.1042/ETLS20170166 http://www.emergtoplifesci.org/content/2/2/213 Yours, Paul H.
  5. Oldest Known Macroscopic Skeletal Organism Was Masquerading as Fossilized Feces. Some researchers initially dismissed the remains of Palaeopascichnus lineari as teeny turds from a bygone era SmithsonianCom, https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smartnews-history-archaeology/oldest-known-macroscopic-skeletal-organism-was-masquerading-fossilized-feces-180970509/ Petrified Chains of 'Poop' Turn Out to Be One of Earth's Oldest Skeletons By Stephanie Pappas, Live Science, October 9, 2018 https://www.livescience.com/63783-mystery-fossil-is-oldest-exoskeleton.html Kolesnikov, A.V., Rogov, V.I., Bykova, N.V., Danelian, T., Clausen, S., Maslov, A.V. and Grazhdankin, D.V., 2018. The oldest skeletal macroscopic organism Palaeopascichnus linearis. Precambrian Research, 316, pp.24-37. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301926817307052 http://www.ipgg.sbras.ru/ru/science/publications/publ-the-oldest-skeletal-macroscopic-organism-palaeopascichnus-047874 Yours, Paul H.
  6. from: Science Magazine Gregory J. Retallack, Department of Earth Sciences, University of Oregon (October 3, 2018) Bobrovskiy et al. (1) have assembled impressive biomarker data which rules out three of five alternatives for the biological affinities of the problematic Ediacaran fossils Dickinsonia and Andiva. The cholesterols extracted from the fossils do indeed rule out affinities with lichenized fungi such as Ascomycota and Basidiomycota, and also with Rhizaria. This does not mean that Dickinsonia and Andiva were necessarily animals, because a third fungal phylum, Glomeromycota, also produces cholesterol without ergosterol (2). The living lichenized glomeromycotan, Geosiphon pyriformis, is unusual in housing the photosymbiont inside enlarged cells (3), and its fossil record may include Precambrian problematica such as Horodyskia (4) and Diskagma ranging in age back 2.2 Ga (5). Glomeromycotan fungi are also known from Ediacaran acritarchs with attached hyphae, stalked vesicles, complex wall ultrastructure, and chitin composition demonstrated by FTIR (6). A glomeromycotan lichen fragment preserved by cellular permineralization also has been described from Ediacaran rocks of China (7). Cholesterol in Dickinsonia and Andiva permits both glomeromycotan and animal affinities, but additional observations provide a test of these alternatives. Bobrovskiy et al. (1) also found that the proportion of cholesterol relative to stigmasterol (a chlorophyte biomarker) increased in larger compared with smaller Dickinsonia. This is not what would be expected for a slow-moving or sessile animal increasingly fouled with algae as it grew, nor would such a regular decline be expected from vagaries of animal-feeding on algae. Declining stigmasterol with increasing cholesterol is compatible with building of fungal biomass by controlled populations of photosymbiotic algae. Dickinsonia and Andiva may have been glomeromycotan fungi lichenized with green algae. Undisputed Ediacaran animals trace and body fossils are small (< 5mm diameter) and vermiform with chitin or calcite skeletons, and have been characterized as Ediacaran Wormworld (8). In contrast, Dickinsonia and Andiva are part of a diverse group of large (up to 1.4 m) and unskeletonized, crustose to foliose, quilted organisms, from very different sedimentary facies (9), and could be characterized as Ediacaran Mattressland. References and Notes 1. I. Brobovskiy, et al., Science 361, 1246-1249 (2018). 2. Fontaine et al. Lipids 36, 1357, 2001; J.D. Weete, M. Abril, M. Blackwell, PloS One 5(5), e10899 (2010). 3. A. Schüßler, M.Kluge, M., in The Mycota IX (ed. B. Hock), 151-161 (Springer, Berlin, 2000) 4. G.J. Retallack, K.L. Dunn, J. Saxby, J. Precambrian Research 126, 125–142 (2013). 5. G.J. Retallack, et al., Precambrian Research 235, 71-87 (2013). 6. G.J. Retallack, Botanica Pacifica 4(2), 19-33 (2015). 7. X. Yuan, S. Xiao, T. N. Taylor, Science 308, 1017-1020 (2005) 8. J.D. Schiffbauer et al. GSA Today 26(11), 4-11 (2016) 9. G.J. Retallack, Nature 493, 89-92 (2013), Gondwana Research 36, 94-110 (2016), Alcheringa 40, 583-600 (2016).
  7. I have noticed lately that a lot of fossils of so called Sabellidites cambriensis are popping up on a lot of sites for sale. They're sold as basal annelid worms that arose during the terminal Ediacaran. They predominantly are coming from the Lontova formation, dated at ~541-545 Mya, which is more or less the Ediacaran/Cambrian boundary. I would think that such fossils would be of great interest to researchers since, assuming they are basal annelids, they would represent one of, if not the first, appearances of a modern phylum in the fossil record. Yet the literature on this species is very sparse, with no more than half a dozen papers having been published since it's initial description in 1926. Does anyone here have any information on this subject?
  8. There is a website that describes a controversial fossil found in 2003: http://www.abc.net.au/science/articles/2003/11/10/984724.htm Since it doesn't have a name at the time of publishing, I'm finding it difficult to find more information on it.
  9. As a young mineral, crystal and fossil collector, I was perusing through my uncle's 1962 copy of "Scientific American". In it was an article on recently described "Animals" of the Precambrian period. I was fascinated by the artist's abstract rendition of these critters as they may have lived. The early scientists were beguiled as was I. Naturally, collectors envision finding great things themselves and so the wanting started. Fast forward to 2016 and I find myself retired. Nearly all localities of these Precambrian sites are protected and I realize I won't be digging these fossils anytime soon. My next move was, those who cannot collect , buy. In the order of Jonesing I wanted a Dickinsonia. Then came my two Kimberella. And my last hold out was Tribrachidium. At this point any Vendian creature I get is just a plus, Jonesing is a whimsical thing that can break your piggy bank.
  10. Why life on Earth first got big, University of Cambridge, ScienceDaily, June 25, 2018 https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/06/180625122505.htm N.L. fossils take centre stage in new academic paper Sadie-Rae Werner, The Western Star, Newfoundland http://www.thewesternstar.com/news/nl-fossils-take-centre-stage-in-new-academic-paper-222060/ Five things to know about Mistaken Point Ecological Reserve, The Telegram, July 18, 2016 http://www.thetelegram.com/news/local/five-things-to-know-about-mistaken-point-ecological-reserve-127401/ The paper is: Emily G. Mitchell, Charlotte G. Kenchington. The utility of height for the Ediacaran organisms of Mistaken Point. Nature Ecology & Evolution, 2018; DOI: 10.1038/s41559-018-0591-6 https://www.researchgate.net/publication/325973266_The_utility_of_height_for_Ediacaran_organisms_of_Mistaken_Point https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Emily_Mitchell21 https://www.nature.com/articles/s41559-018-0591-6 Another paper is: Mitchell, E.G. and Butterfield, N.J., 2018. Spatial analyses of Ediacaran communities at Mistaken Point. Paleobiology, 44(1), pp. 40-57. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/322724259_Spatial_analyses_of_Ediacaran_communities_at_Mistaken_Point https://www.researchgate.net/publication/324078992_Spatial_analyses_of_Ediacaran_communities_at_Mistaken_Point https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Emily_Mitchell21 Yours, Paul H.
  11. “Names of recently discovered Ediacaran era fossil animals honor President Barack Obama and Sir David Attenborough“ https://ucrtoday.ucr.edu/54142 https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2018/06/19/scientists-discover-fossil-sea-creature-obama/714479002/
  12. These Are the Oldest Known Footprints on the Planet By George Dvorsky, Gizmodo, June 7, 2018 https://gizmodo.com/these-are-the-oldest-known-footprints-on-the-planet-1826648702 When did animals leave their first footprint on Earth? Chinese Academy of Sciences, June 6, 2018, Press Release https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-06/caos-wda060518.php The paper is: Zhe Chen, Xiang Chen, Chuanming Zhou, Xunlai Yuan, and Shuhai Xiao, 2018, Late Ediacaran trackways produced by bilaterian animals with paired appendages Science Advances 06 Jun 2018: Vol. 4, no. 6, eaao6691 DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aao6691 http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/4/6/eaao6691 Yours, Paul H.
  13. Rise of Animals, Fedonkin et al.

    I just finished reading this one. I do recommend it for the early-life nuts among us. It's chock full of eye candy, diagrams and info on everything Precambrian, not just Ediacaran though that is the focus, and into the Cambrian as well. State of the art as of 2007.. I'd like to see an updated edition if there ever is one. There is an introductory section covering everything from the universe and the origin of Earth and of life, early macroscopic fossils, the Snowball Earth and so on, then gets into the meat of the different sites (major and minor) bearing Ediacaran fossils including some of the history of the sites' discovery, and of course the thinking around what the different critters are and how they evolved. I particularly like the 'Atlas of Precambrian Metazoans' toward the back. Sample pages:
  14. This question just crossed my mind today, seemingly without provocation: What are the oldest known coprolites in the fossil record, whether from vertebrates or invertebrates? I know of Paleozoic coprolites, but is there any evidence of coprolites before that, perhaps from the Ediacaran? And if there are no pre-Cambrian coprolites recorded, what are the oldest known from the Paleozoic? I have a feeling that @GeschWhat might know a thing or two about this subject since, after all, she is the official Queen of Poopiness on TFF.
  15. Did Cloudina Build reefs?

    Princeton geologists solve fossil mystery by creating 3-D ‘virtual tour’ through rock, Prnceton University https://www.princeton.edu/news/2018/02/27/princeton-geologists-solve-fossil-mystery-creating-3-d-virtual-tour-through-rock Princeton geologists solve fossil mystery by creating 3-D ‘virtual tour’ through rock, Brinkware, March 1, 2018 http://en.brinkwire.com/179755/princeton-geologists-solve-fossil-mystery-by-creating-3-d-virtual-tour-through-rock/ The paper is: Mehra, A., and Maloof, A., 2018, Multiscale approach reveals that Cloudina aggregates are detritus and not in situ reef constructions. PNAS 2018; published ahead of print February 26, 2018, https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1719911115 http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2018/02/21/1719911115 Yours, Paul H.
  16. Biomarkers helped solving the mystery of 500-million-year-old macroorganisms, Lomonosov Moscow State University, January 23, 2018, https://phys.org/news/2018-01-biomarkers-mystery-million-year-old-macroorganisms.html Bobrovskiy, I., Hope, J.M., Krasnova, A., Ivantsov, A. and Brocks, J.J., 2018. Molecular fossils from organically preserved Ediacara biota reveal cyanobacterial origin for Beltanelliformis. Nature Ecology & Evolution, Received: 16 July 2017 Accepted: 04 December 2017 Published online: 22 January 2018 https://www.nature.com/articles/s41559-017-0438-6 Yours, Paul H.
  17. Tirasiana coniformis Palij, 1976

    From the album Invertebrates

    Tirasiana coniformis Palij, 1976 Ediacaran Karachiivtsi Ukraine
  18. From the album Invertebrates

    Palaeopascichnus delicatus Palij, 1976 Ediacaran Mohyliv-Podilskyi Group Mohylev Formation Bernashivka Ukraine From Wikipedia: Palaeopascichnus is a genus of Ediacaran organism comprising a series of lobes; it is plausibly a protozoan, but probably unrelated to the classical 'Ediacaran biota'. Lit.: ANTCLIFFE, J., GOODAY A. and BRASIER, M.: TESTING THE PROTOZOAN HYPOTHESIS FOR EDIACARAN FOSSILS: A DEVELOPMENTAL ANALYSIS OF PALAEOPASCICHNUS. Palaeontology, Vol. 54, Part 5, 2011, pp . 1157–1175
  19. From the album Invertebrates

    Namacalathus hermanastes Grotzinger et al., 2000 Ediacaran Nama Group Kuibis Quarzit Fish River Canyon Namibia Lit.: Zhuravlev AY, Wood RA, Penny AM. 2015 Ediacaran skeletal metazoan interpreted as a lophophorate. Proc. R. Soc. B 282 : 20151860. http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2015.1860
  20. Ediacaran Cyclomedusa davidi Sprigg, 1947

    From the album Invertebrates

    Cyclomedusa davidi Sprigg, 1947 Upper Ediacaran Mohylev formation Yampil beds Bernashivka Ukraine Diameter ~ 9cm / 4"
  21. Tirasiana coniformis Palij, 1976

    From the album Invertebrates

    Tirasiana coniformis Palij, 1976 Ediacaran Karachiivtsi Ukraine
  22. Hunting Rare Fossils of the Ediacaran

    Wendel, J. (2017), Hunting rare fossils of the Ediacaran, Eos, 98, https://doi.org/10.1029/2017EO086601. Published on 13 November 2017. https://eos.org/features/hunting-rare-fossils-of-the-ediacaran https://eos.org/current-issues “The search for fossil imprints and casts of squishy organisms takes time, perseverance, and sometimes a sprinkle of luck.” Smith, E.F., Nelson, L.L., Tweedt, S.M., Zeng, H. and Workman, J.B., 2017, July. A cosmopolitan late Ediacaran biotic assemblage: new fossils from Nevada and Namibia support a global biostratigraphic link. In Proceedings of the Royal Society B (Vol. 284, No. 1858, p. 20170934). https://www.researchgate.net/publication/318379716_A_cosmopolitan_late_Ediacaran_biotic_assemblage_new_fossils_from_Nevada_and_Namibia_support_a_global_biostratigraphic_link https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Emily_Smith52 http://rspb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/284/1858/20170934 A related paper is: E.F. Smith L.L. Nelson M.A. Strange A.E. Eyster S.M. Rowland D.P. Schrag F.A. Macdonald, 2016, The end of the Ediacaran: Two new exceptionally preserved body fossil assemblages from Mount Dunfee, Nevada, USA Geology 44 (11):911-914. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1130/G38157.1 https://static1.squarespace.com/static/53cedb86e4b0710434ee1ff4/t/57fee4eef5e231fadeb000ee/1476322543557/Smith_2016_Geology_Dunfee.pdf https://pubs.geoscienceworld.org/geology/article/44/11/911/195087/the-end-of-the-ediacaran-two-new-exceptionally Yours, Paul H.