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Fossilised Parasites

19 May 2024
Biology, Catastrophism, Geology

At https://www.sciencenews.org/article/ancient-shark-parasite-fossil-amber … a tapeworm found fossilised in amber looks strikingly similar to tapeworms found in the guts of modern day sharks. The fossil goes back to the Cretaceous period and the amber tomb was unearthed in Myanmar [Burma]. The question is asked – as these parasites live in the bellies of fish, how did the tapeworm end up in tree resin [amber]. As they also have very soft bodies and a short transient life cycle, how did fossilisation ocurr? It is also described as in a state of exceptional preservation. The researchers express puzzlement as o how it found its way up a tree – out of the stomach of a shark. It seems only a catastrophic explanation is possible, even though the bodyparts of a shark have not been found [too big to end up in tree resin]. Its state of preservation definitely points towards instantaneous death, stuck in the amber – but there must have been a tangle of marine life mixed with vegetation such as trees, indicating both marine and land life were affected. A tsunami wave that was highly destructive would seem to be one possibility.

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