125-million year old mammalian fossil from the age of dinosaurs found in...

125-million year old mammalian fossil from the age of dinosaurs found in Spain

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The fossil of a 125-million-year-old Cretaceous Period mammal Spinolestes xenarthrosus is pictured near Cuenca, Spain in this undated handout photo obtained by Reuters October 14, 2015. Scientists on Wednesday announced the discovery near the Spanish town of Cuenca of a stunningly well-preserved fossil of a Spinolestes. It includes a complete skeleton, fur preserved at the cellular level, hedgehog-like spines, plate-like structures of keratin known as dermal scutes, a rounded external ear, skin pores and even soft tissues of the liver and lung. REUTERS/Georg Oleschinski/Handout via ReutersATTENTION EDITORS - THIS PICTURE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. REUTERS IS UNABLE TO INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THE AUTHENTICITY, CONTENT, LOCATION OR DATE OF THIS IMAGE. THIS PICTURE IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS. EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. NO SALES. TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

Scientists have recently unearthed a pre historic mammal that lived in the age of dinosaurs. The ancient mammal also possessed spines which are much akin to modern day hedgehog. It is a path breaking discovery, finding a well preserved mammal fossil dating some 125 million years ago. The discovery was made near the city of Cuenca in Spain.

Palaeontologists have been dumbfounded with the discovery which is making headlines across the world. It is akin to introducing to the world a new species that lived in the era of dinosaurs, some 125 million years ago.
What has surprised Paleontologists is the condition of the fossil with features like hair and soft tissues which make it the oldest specimen with well preserved internal organs. The well preserved fossil of Cretaceous Period mammal named Spinolestes xenarthrosus was announced by the scientific community on Wednesday.

Explaining the importance of finding a fossil with perfectly preserved skin and hair structures fossilized in microscopic detail in such an old fossil Researcher Zhe-Xi Luo, PhD, professor of organismal biology and anatomy at the University of Chicago stated that the animal displays all the structural vividness of a modern day mammalian skin.

Another paleontologist Thomas Martin from University of Bonn said that it was known that the mammals of that era had hairs but it is for the first time we have got our hands on such a well preserved fossil with intact hair right to the cellular level.

The study team is trying to solve the puzzle about how the fossil managed to remain intact and preserved for so long. Scientists suggest that probably the creature was covered by a colony of bacteria when it died. Researchers were able to make out liver, lungs and diaphragm from soft tissues. A large external ear was also found. The creature had skin plates which is much similar to present day armadillos.

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Brian Thompson has been a science journalist since past 15 years and continues his journey with the Astronomy, Space and Social Science changes happened so far in this industry. He has worked for various magazines as the chief editor. He has experience in writing and editing across every sector of the media involving magazines, newspapers, online as well as for leading television shows for the past 15 years. His style of presentation is both crisp yet captivating for the audience. Email : brian@dailysciencejournal.com