Nearly a half a billion years ago, tiny horseshoe crabs crept along the shorelines much like today's larger versions do, new fossil evidence suggests.
Two nearly complete fossil specimens discovered in Canada reveal a new genus of horseshoe crab, pushing their origins back at least 100 million years earlier than previously thought.
Analysis of the recent finds also indicates the ocean creatures haven’t changed much over the eons.
"We wouldn't necessarily have expected horseshoe crabs to look very much like the modern ones, but that's exactly what they look like," Rudkin said.
"This body plan that they've invented, they've stayed with it for almost a half a billion years. It's a good plan," Rudkin told LiveScience. "They've survived almost unchanged up until the present day, whereas lots of other animals haven't."
"They've survived almost unchanged up until the present day, whereas lots of other animals haven't."
...or so we are led to believe. Everything is a transitional in the eyes of an evolutionist. Certainly organisms have the ability to adapt, but the question is to what extent.
Fossil horseshoe crab from "445 million years ago", and a modern day horseshoe crab
View of the fossil under water.
Modern horseshoe crab.
Questioning dinosaur "feathers".
Out of place fossils...insect fosilized in amber.