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Fungus is oldest land fossil at 440 mya

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File:Ornatifilum lornensis.jpg
Ornatifilum lornensis/Verisimilus

So far known: “rope-like structure similar to that of some modern-day fungi” Cambridge Research News:

This early pioneer, known as Tortotubus, displays a structure similar to one found in some modern fungi, which likely enabled it to store and transport nutrients through the process of decomposition. Although it cannot be said to be the first organism to have lived on land, it is the oldest fossil of a terrestrial organism yet found. The results are published in the Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society.

Here (public access).

From BBC:

Most scientists agree that life moved from the sea to the land between 500 and 450 million years ago.

But in order for plants and animals to gain a foothold on terra firma there needed to be nutrients and soil to support them.

Fungi kick-started this process, by getting nitrogen and oxygen into the rudimentary soil.

Tortotubus was also more likely to be preserved in the fossil record than the bacteria and algae that are assumed to have started the process.

Each microfossil is shorter than a human hair is wide and has a rope-like structure similar to that of some modern-day fungi. More.

See also: Stasis: Life goes on but evolution does not happen (or often doesn’t change things very much)

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One Reply to “Fungus is oldest land fossil at 440 mya

  1. 1
    Mung says:

    ok, but how did it find it’s way between my toes?

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