Earliest trace of moving life found in 2.1 billion year old African rock | News | DW

Scientists at the French University of Poitiers report they have discovered the earliest traces of life forms that were able to move independently.

Geologist Abderrazak El Albani and his team’s report in the Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences journal asked: “Was this biological innovation the prelude to more perfected forms of movement or an experiment cut short by the drastic drop in atmospheric oxygen rates which occurred approximately 2.083 billion years ago?”

The team used imaging technology to examine the fossil traces

The previous, earliest evidence of moving lifeforms was half a billion years old.

“The more or less sinuous structures are tubular, of a generally consistent diameter of a few millimetres, and run through fine layers of sedimentary rock,” the team reported.

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