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"Extremely bizarre" timid crabs amaze palaeontologists



Even Dr. Frankenstein and his monster would be jealous of this creature.

Paleontologists have discovered the fossil of an ancient crab that lived 90 to 95 million years ago and is so "completely bizarre" that it literally astounded the researchers

Known as Callichimaera perplexa, which means "amazing beautiful chimera" The crab had a selection of body parts that made Mr. Potato Head pale with envy.

"We started to examine these fossils, and we found them had something that looked like the eyes of a larva, the mouth of a shrimp, the claws of a crab, and the shell of a lobster," said Javier Luque, lead author and postdoctoral fellow Paleontologist in the Department of Biological Sciences of the University of Alberta at Yale University in a statement.

Luque continued, "We have an idea of ​​what a typical crab looks like ̵

1; and these new fossils break all these rules." [19659002] In Greek mythology, a chimera had the head al ion, the body of a goat, and the tail of a snake.

The researchers wrote that the discovery and body type of C. perplexa challenges the conventional view of the earlier crabs

"Our phylogenetic analyzes, including representatives of all important lineages of fossil and extant crabs, are herkö Outlines of their evolution by revealing several convergent losses of a typical "crab-like" body plan since the early Cretaceous, "the study's summary says.

the journal Science Advances.

The huge eyes of the crab probably helped him hunt smaller crustaceans as they swam in the oceans of the ancient Cretaceous. "We do not think they are filter feeders," Luque told Live Science. "We believe that they were indeed active predators."

C. Perplexa was first discovered in the Andes in 2005, along with other ancient crustaceans such as lobster and shrimp. Since then, Luque and a team of researchers have analyzed in detail the fossil (no larger than a quarter) and suggested that it spent its life floating, unlike today's crabs crawling their lives.

"We found dozens of animals, from small infant specimens to mature individuals where we found reproductive organs – a smoker's handgun proving that these were adult organisms rather than larvae. We can even see individual facets on the large compound eyes of these creatures, "added Luque.

" It's an incredible amount of detail, and we were able to reconstruct it as if it had been lived yesterday. "[19659002] Luque said it was not uncommon to find different body types in older rocks as life still stretched out in new forms.

" This mid-Cretaceous discovery shows that there are still surprising discoveries from newer, weird are organisms that are waiting to be found, especially in the tropics, "he concluded.

"It wonders you," what else is there for us to discover? ""


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