440 million years old fossil on Dutch beach?


The Texel fossil, photo by Bram Fey

A week ago, Hannes and Klaas Fey were walking on the beach near the Slufter nature reserve on Texel island, the Netherlands. Then, they found a small fossil.

Arthur Oosterbaan of Ecomare museum thinks the fossil may be a Hindia fibrosa. A sponge from the Ordovician, about 440 million years old.

Maybe about 150,000 years ago, during the Ice Age, a glacier transported the little sponge fossil from Scandinavia to Texel.

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Trilobite fossils of Kangaroo Island, Australia


This video is called Kangaroo Island / Australia.

From the Australian Broadcasting Corporation:

Narration: Kangaroo Island, South Australia. A holiday destination renowned for its beaches and natural splendours.

And soon to be renowned for some of the weirdest relics of ancient marine life in the world. …

Narration: Here in Emu Bay on the island’s north coast an international team of palaeontologists hosted by the South Australian Museum are digging up fossils from the Cambrian Period. They’re around 520 million years old, a time when life had only just begun to diversify.

These animals were living on the floor of an ancient sea. Many of them were arthropods, the group that includes modern crabs, lobsters, spiders, centipedes and insects. And by far the most common type of fossil is this one – a trilobite.

Jim: This is the largest species of trilobite. They’re called trilobites because they’ve got three lobes to them. And you see those ridges? They’re the eye ridges. So this thing could see.

Narration: Diego Garcia– from the University of Madrid – has seen fossils like this before – in the Burgess Shales of western Canada.

Talking about Diego Garcia and islands: it is to be hoped that this scientist Diego Garcia will fare better than the inhabitants of Diego Garcia island in the Indian ocean, driven off their island in order to make space for a US military base, now also a torture prison.

Tiny Trilobites Drifted in Cambrian Currents: here.

Signs of violence on agnostid trilobites found in Cambrian rocks suggest they were attacking each other: here.

Fossils record reveals ancient migrations, trilobite mass matings: here.

A new species of the Lower Ordovician pliomerid trilobite Pseudocybele: here.

It’s easy to travel responsibly on Kangaroo Island, where conservation is key to the wildlife that abounds: here.

July 2011: Nearly 700 people have planted 120,000 seedlings to help restore and protect the habitat on Kangaroo Island, Australia. The annual Kangaroo Island Planting Festival attracted 676 volunteers this year – almost 200 more than last year – with more than 100 different species planted to establish new habitat in the lower Cygnet Valley: here.