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Land organisms from Cambrian found in soil layer under the soil

Cover image for Vol. 54 Issue 6

Here’s the Abstract:

Problematic megafossils in Cambrian palaeosols of South Australia

Gregory J. Retallack

Article first published online: 15 NOV 2011

Palaeontology

Volume 54, Issue 6, pages 1223–1242, November 2011

Abstract: Red calcareous Middle Cambrian palaeosols from the upper Moodlatana Formation in the eastern Flinders Ranges of South Australia formed in well-drained subhumid floodplains and include a variety of problematic fossils. The fossils are preserved like trace fossil endichnia but do not appear to be traces of burrows or other animal movement. They are here regarded as remains of sessile organisms, comparable with fungi or plants living in place, and are formally named as palaeobotanical form genera under provisions of the International Code of Botanical Nomenclature. Most common are slender (0.5–2 mm) branching filaments flanked by green-grey reduction haloes within the red matrix of palaeosol surface horizons (Prasinema gracile gen. et sp. nov.). Other axial structures (Prasinema nodosum and P. adunatum gen. et spp. nov.) are larger and show distinctive surface irregularities (short protuberances and irregular striations, respectively). The size and form of these filaments are most like rhizines of soil-crust lichens. Other evidence of life on land includes quilted spheroids (Erytholus globosus gen. et sp. nov.) and thallose impressions (Farghera sp. indet.), which may have been slime moulds and lichens, respectively. These distinctive fossils in Cambrian palaeosols represent communities comparable with modern biological soil crusts.

Hat tip: Pos-Darwinista

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4 Responses to Land organisms from Cambrian found in soil layer under the soil

  1. More evidence of ancient ‘terra-forming’ of the earth to make it habitable for higher life-forms:

    notes:

    Cryptobiotic Soils: Holding the Place in Place
    Excerpt: Cryptobiotic soil crusts, consisting of soil cyanobacteria, lichens and mosses, play an important ecological roles,,, Cryptobiotic crusts increase the stability of otherwise easily eroded soils, increase water infiltration in regions that receive little precipitation, and increase fertility in soils often limited in essential nutrients such as nitrogen and carbon (Harper and Marble, 1988; Johansen, 1993; Metting, 1991; Belnap and Gardner, 1993; Belnap, 1994; Williams et al., 1995).
    http://geochange.er.usgs.gov/s.....gy/crypto/

    Bacterial ‘Ropes’ Tie Down Shifting Southwest
    Excerpt: In the desert, the initial stabilization of topsoil by rope-builders promotes colonization by a multitude of other microbes. From their interwoven relationships arise complex communities known as “biological soil crusts,” important ecological components in the fertility and sustainability of arid ecosystems.
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re.....203140.htm

    CRYPTOBIOTIC SOIL -
    Excerpt: When moistened, cyanobacteria become active, moving through the soil and leaving a trail of sticky material behind. The sheath material sticks to surfaces such as rock or soil particles, forming an intricate web of fibers throughout the soil. In this way, loose soil particles are joined together, and an otherwise unstable surface becomes very resistant to both wind and water erosion.
    http://www.toddshikingguide.co.....Other2.htm

  2. i.e.:

    The Microbial Engines That Drive Earth’s Biogeochemical Cycles – Falkowski 2008
    Excerpt: Microbial life can easily live without us; we, however, cannot survive without the global catalysis and environmental transformations it provides. – Paul G. Falkowski – Professor Geological Sciences – Rutgers
    http://www.genetics.iastate.edu/delong1.pdf

  3. BA77:

    “Microbial life can easily live without us; we, however, cannot survive without the global catalysis and environmental transformations it provides”
    ====

    This is so true. They’re the ultimately recyclers and we need their trillions X Trillions and more of their numbers or our goose would be cooked. The incredible thing is the amount of information that is packed their tiny bodies that allow them to engineer themselves to take on whatever task come what may. Given human idiocy and irrresponsible knack for creating tons of filth, we need all the help they can provide. Nylonase comes to mind.

  4. Not sure this paper says what you think it does.

    Could News elaborate on the issue here?

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