Monday, January 30, 2017

Scientists find 'oldest human ancestor'

Researchers have recently discovered the earliest known ancestor of humans. They have claimed that this fossil traces back to over 540-million years ago, and was well preserved. This microscopic sea animal is the earliest known to the evolutionary path that led to a fish and eventually to humans. The scientist behind this say that Saccorhytus is believed to be the most primitive of the deuterostome family. Researchers concluded that Saccorhytus was about a millimeter in size, and is believed to have burrowed itself between grains of sand on the sea bed. Saccorhytus was also covered with a thin like, flexible skin and muscles, leading scientist to conclude that it moved by contracting its muscles and making it twist and turn. The researchers say that its most striking feature is its immense mouth, relative to the rest of its body. Scientist say that it probably ate by sucking food particles, or even other small microscopic creatures. 
I believe this is an amazing find for scientist because it is the oldest deuterostome; surpassing the other recently discovered deuterostome, dating about to 520-million years ago. What I found interesting is that the researchers were unable to find any evidence that the animal had an anus, which suggests that it consumed food and excreted from the mouth. As I can see,  this not only gives us understanding into the very first stages of the evolution that led to the fish, but to us.

1 comment:

  1. Wow that is amazing that it was so small and lived that long ago. It's interesting as deuterostomes can cover a wide range of species so this is being in that category better helps us better understand the evolutionary path and our origins. It also brings up the discussion of evolution as this animal was around before some of the dinosaurs.