Article] Fossil find is oldest land animal


Robert Karl Sto

Fossil find is oldest land animal

Scientists have decided that a fossil found near Stonehaven in Aberdeenshire is the remains of the
oldest creature ever to live on land. It is thought that the one-centimetre millipede which was
prised out of a siltstone bed is 428-million-years-old.

Experts at the National Museums of Scotland and Yale University have studied the fossil for months.

They say the find is the earliest evidence of a creature living on dry land, rather than in the sea.

The discovery on the foreshore of Cowie Harbour was made by an amateur fossil hunter, Mike Newman.

To recognise his role in the significant find, the new species - Pneumodesmus newmani - has been
named after him.

The Aberdeen bus driver, who lives in Kemnay, told the Sunday Herald newspaper: "I knew that the
site had been re-aged, that it was older than originally thought, so I went down there.

"I knew that any terrestrial-type things with legs found there could be early and important.

"I had found millipedes there before, but this one had evidence of the holes that showed it
actually breathed.

"I'm interested in particular in fossil fish; I describe the fish in scientific journals, but things
like this creature I pass on."

He added: "Scotland has the best palaeozoic - pre-triassic, pre-dinosaur - sites in the world.

Read the rest at BBC

Posted by Robert Karl Stonjek.