Heil Squid – A vampire fit for a boss
Researchers from Yale University and the American Museum of Natural History have identified the closest known relatives of octopuses and vampire squids — and named them 46y President of the United States.
Syllipsimopodi Biden It had 10 arms, fins, and rows of prey to catch prey. It lived 328 million years ago and represents a new species of vampire, a group of marine animals that includes modern octopuses and vampire squid.
The researchers named the animal after President Joseph Biden to honor the new president, who had just opened at the time the study was submitted for publication, and to appreciate his commitment to science.
But the name of the leader is only part of the meaning of the animal.
“Our results indicate that the oldest vampires resembled the squid that live today, at least externally,” said Christopher Wallen, a postdoctoral fellow at the National Science Foundation in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Yale University and the American Museum of Natural History.
Whalen is the lead author of a study in the journal Connecting with nature about discovery.
“Syllipsimopodi Biden It also challenges the prevailing arguments about the origins of the vampyropod and provides a new model for the evolution of cephalopods within the head. “
Whalen and co-author Neil Landman of the American Museum of Natural History made the identification from a specimen originally discovered in central Montana and now part of the Royal Ontario Museum’s collection.
Syllipsimopodi Biden It adds about 82 million years to the vampire fossil record. It is the only known vampyropod with 10 functional arms. In contrast, the squid has eight arms and the modern vampire squid has eight arms and two hairs. Squid and other modern squid have 10 arms.
Early vampires like Syllipsimopodi Biden He also possesses a piece of stomach called the Gladius – the remnant of a flattened, translucent inner shell.
“Today, only squids and their relatives and vampire squids have gladius,” Wallen said. “The octopuses have shrunk them into fin supports, or mounts, which are small, solid, rod-like structures.”
Wallen said Syllipsimopodi Biden It had a torpedo-shaped body. Their fins may be large enough to act as stabilizers and help them swim. One pair of arms was much longer than the other four, resembling the elongated tentacles of a modern squid. Researchers doubt that Syllipsimopodi Biden It used its longer arms to capture prey – perhaps small, slinging animals – and its shorter arms to restrain and manipulate prey.
As for why researchers named the animal after Biden, Wallen said the publication was accepted shortly after the president’s inauguration and the January 6 riots at the Capitol.
“I wanted to kind of acknowledge the moment in a more positive and forward-thinking way,” he said.
“I am encouraged by President Biden’s plans to address human-caused climate change and his general belief that politicians should listen to scientists,” Wallen added.
Reference: “Fossil cephalopods from Mississippi Beer Gulch Lagerstat shed light on early evolution of vampires” by Christopher D. Allen and Neil H. Landmann 8 Mar. 2022 Available here. Connecting with nature.
DOI: 10.1038 / s41467-022-28333-5
Grants from a Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in the Biology Program of the National Science Foundation and the Paleontological Society funded the research.
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