Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Hermit Arthropods 500 Million Years Ago?

Date:
April 4, 2009
Source:
Geological Society of America
Summary:
When animals first crawled onto land, one of the greatest obstacles they had to contend with was figuring out how to breathe. No longer bathed in oxygen-rich marine waters, their gills would surely have dried out. Scientists have analyzed fossils from 500-million-year-old rocks that show one way these early pioneers may have dealt with this problem--the first terrestrial animals carried a shell on their backs.

When animals first crawled onto land, one of the greatest obstacles they had to contend with was figuring out how to breathe. No longer bathed in oxygen-rich marine waters, their gills would surely have dried out.

Related Articles


Hagadorn and Seilacher have analyzed fossils from 500-million-year-old rocks that show one way these early pioneers may have dealt with this problem--the first terrestrial animals carried a shell on their backs.

Like modern hermit crabs, these ancient pioneers had a scorpion-like body, and could stuff their abdomen into a coiled snail shell. One advantage of doing this was that the shell may have acted as a humid chamber to keep their gills moist.

This would have allowed brief forays out of the water, to explore the beaches and tidal flats, and to graze in environments where there was no competition from other animals or predators.

These fossils represent the first usage of "tools," and provide insights into how some animals may have made the leap from living in water to living on land.

The article by James W. Hagadorn and Adolf Seilacher, Dept. of Geology, Amherst College, Amherst, Massachusetts, was published in the April issue of Geology.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Geological Society of America. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. James W. Hagadorn and Adolf Seilacher. Hermit arthropods 500 million years ago? Geology, 2009; 37 (4): 295-298 DOI: 10.1130/G25181A.1

Cite This Page:

Geological Society of America. "Hermit Arthropods 500 Million Years Ago?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 April 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090331183512.htm>.
Geological Society of America. (2009, April 4). Hermit Arthropods 500 Million Years Ago?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090331183512.htm
Geological Society of America. "Hermit Arthropods 500 Million Years Ago?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090331183512.htm (accessed October 25, 2014).

Share This



More Fossils & Ruins News

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deep Sea 'mushroom' Could Be Early Branch on Tree of Life

Deep Sea 'mushroom' Could Be Early Branch on Tree of Life

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 24, 2014) Miniature deep sea animals discovered off the Australian coast almost three decades ago are puzzling scientists, who say the organisms have proved impossible to categorise. Academics at the Natural History of Denmark have appealed to the world scientific community for help, saying that further information on Dendrogramma enigmatica and Dendrogramma discoides could answer key evolutionary questions. Jim Drury has more. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Fossil Treasures at Risk in Morocco Desert Town

Fossil Treasures at Risk in Morocco Desert Town

AFP (Oct. 23, 2014) Hundreds of archeological jewels in and around the town of 30,000 people prompt geologists and archeologists to call the Erfoud area "the largest open air fossil museum in the world". Duration: 02:17 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Oldest Bone Ever Sequenced Shows Human/Neanderthal Mating

Oldest Bone Ever Sequenced Shows Human/Neanderthal Mating

Newsy (Oct. 23, 2014) A 45,000-year-old thighbone is showing when humans and neanderthals may have first interbred and revealing details about our origins. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Weird-Looking Dinosaur Solves 50-Year-Old Mystery

Weird-Looking Dinosaur Solves 50-Year-Old Mystery

Newsy (Oct. 23, 2014) You've probably seen some weird-looking dinosaurs, but have you ever seen one this weird? It's worth a look. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins