Friday, 16 March 2018

“Sea Monster” Fossil Shows Darwin-Defying Diversity in Cambrian Era Brains

Kerygmachela kierkegaardi might have looked like this. Image courtesy of Apokryltaros, CC BY 2.5.

Joel Kontinen

For Charles Darwin, the sudden appearance of complex animals in the Cambrian was a huge dilemma.

And since then, the situation has become even worse. In 2012 University of Bath evolutionary biologist Matthew Wills acknowledged that Cambrian fossils “can cause a real headache for evolutionary biologists.”

Cambrian creatures tend to be far too complex for evolution.

Some, like Chengjiangocaris kunmingensis, have a very complex brain. Science reported that a shrimp-like creature dubbed Fuxianhuia protensa presumably did a fair amount of thinking.”

We can also see Darwin-defying diversity in Cambrian creatures.

Kerygmachela kierkegaardi is a 25 cm (10 in.) long “sea monster” found in Greenland.

Assumed to be “520 million years” old, it is “a bizarre, oval-shaped water beast that had two long appendages on its head, 11 swimming flaps on each side and a skinny tail,” Live Science quotes palaeontologist Jakob Vinther as saying.

The researchers also found 15 fossilized brains, which differed considerably from other Cambrian Era brains by being slightly less complex:

An anatomical analysis showed that K. kierkegaardi's brain innervated the creature's large eyes and the frontal appendages it used to grasp its tasty victims, the researchers said.”

Darwinians could never have expected to see such diversity in Cambrian animals.


Geggel, Laura. 2018. Fossilized Brains of Ancient 'Sea Monster' Discovered in Greenland. Live Science. (15 March).