The Oldest Animal Living in 585 Million Years Ago

Uruguayan fossil burrows from late
Neoproterozoic. (Picture from:
Paleontological research groups from Canada and Uruguay found evidence that the animal has been living in 585 million years ago. The discovery suggests that the animal was already scouring the earth for 30 million years earlier than previously thought.

Evidence of the animal is just a line of trace fossils found in Tacuari Formation, Uruguay. Bilateria, trace the owner of the animal's name, a length of 4-7 mm and 1-2 mm wide. Half a billion years ago, these animals crawling on the sediment is buried in a shallow sea.

The creature is very simple. Similar upper body underneath. Symmetrical shape like this that distinguish primitive animals with creatures other than animals that are generally not symmetrical shape. Most of the Bilateria body is a muscle that is used as a tool motion.

"Soft-bodied animals often become weak and disappear, while the tracks are preserved," said Murray Gingras, paleontologists from the University of Alberta in Canada.

Traces of the animal form of irregular lines. Trace patterns indicate that these animals migrate to find prey. The food is organic material attached to the sediment.
Ernesto Pecoits looks at the layers of rock in Uruguay where the tiny tracks of the earliest multicellular animal were discovered. (Picture from:
The animal was moving parallel to the sediment surface without digging ever deeper into the site. According to researchers, it does show how simple the Bilateria tool motion.

On the edge of the track, investigators found a jagged pattern. Geologist from the University of Alberta, Ernesto Pecoits, said serrations are the traces of the animal's footing as it moves forward. Occasionally, these animals appeared to the sediment surface to seek oxygen, then back into the sediment.

Age was assessed by looking at traces of igneous rocks are buried in the same layer as the location of the trail. *** [LIVESCIENCE | SCI-NEWS | ANTON WILLIAM]
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