(ORDO NEWS) — Canadian scientists have discovered that about 500 million years ago, a three-eyed animal with wing-like fins lived in the seas. It swam through shallow waters, using its unique vision to hunt small marine life.
This is the first three-eyed arthropod discovered by scientists.
Researchers from the University of Toronto (Canada) have published the results of their new work – they first found a three-eyed arthropod that lived on Earth during the Cambrian period.
What kind of animal is that
The discovered ancient organism was named Stanleycaris hirpex . He was a predator about the size of a human palm.
Surprisingly, this animal had two protruding eyes on the sides of its head and a third, largest eye, in the middle. Scientists believe that such improved organs of vision helped him hunt smaller prey.
Canadian scientists discovered it while working on the Burgess Shale, a unique rock formation on the slopes of Mount Stephen in Yoho National Park in the Canadian Rocky Mountains in Canada. These areas still contain a huge number of fossils from the Cambrian period.
The body of the discovered arthropod consisted of 17 segments. It also had two pairs of hard blades along the lower third of its body and spiked claws that could probably rake prey straight into the predator’s toothy jaws.
The researchers note that the presence of a large middle eye, combined with two lateral ones, was most likely common for early invertebrates. Later they evolved and the third eye gradually disappeared.
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