Monday, December 14, 2009

Ediacarans & Life On Other Worlds

Richard Corfield on Ediacarans

Image: National Museum of Natural History, courtesy of the Smithsonian Institution.
“So what can the story of the Ediacarans tell us about the evolution of life on other planets? First and perhaps most importantly, it tells us that evolution can happen very quickly. The idea – first credited to Darwin - that vast amounts of deep time are required for evolution to occur may not be correct. The speed with which the Ediacarans arose in the aftermath of the final Cryogenian glaciation suggests strongly that the evolution of complex, multicellular organisms was on the blocks and just waiting for the starting pistol”.

Read more here