Ancient Entoproct Community

An Illustration of small tentacled fossils.
Zhifei Zhang et al.Link

For a long time, scientists thought that some small tentacled fossils were early ancestors of jellyfish. But a new study has found that these ancient animals are actually related to an entirely different group of animals: the entoprocts, which are still alive today. The new fossil (Cotyledion tylodes) lived during the Cambrian period (around 520 million years ago), along with the ancestors of almost every group of animals alive today. It is larger than modern entoprocts: the fossils were 8-56 millimeters tall, while entoprocts alive today reach a maximum of 7 millimeters in height.

Tags: Paleobiology