Living Fossil

FossilThe Soviet Union were at 40 – 50 years of the XX century, it was reported that at a certain stage of growth of the world’s animal and it is in times of the Paleozoic era, about the border Carboniferous and Permian periods in reservoirs were first sacrosanctness fish – coelenterate  It happened about 300 million years ago, tens of millions of years before the Earth the first dinosaurs walked. Coelenterate existed for nearly 250 million years virtually unchanged, as evidenced by the numerous finds of fossilized skeletons in the Earth’s crust layers of different ages. Image of the skeleton and cited in the above tutorial. And about 50 million years ago, all coelenterates have died and disappeared forever from the face of the Earth. Example mentioned in the book, and so thought the then science. … In 1938, the port city of East London, located on the east coast of the South African Union, to head the regional museum was a young and very energetic lady, Miss M. Kortene-Latimer. From the beginning, it has concentrated its efforts on creating exhibits that tell about life in the countryside surrounding the city. Seeing that the main sport and passion of local residents – fishing, she started dating with the captains of the trawlers and managed to captivate them with their enthusiasm in search of rare specimens of the local marine fauna. The fishermen were taken from the catch of fish and other strange unusual animals and preserved Trash fish to Miss Latimer could dig it. Morning of Miss Latimer received a call from the fishing company Irvin and Johnson, and reported that one of the trawlers brought her to investigate a mysterious kind of a fish. On deck trawler lay a pile of fresh catch, they were mostly the usual sharks, but underneath Ms. Latimer said the big blue fish with scales and a powerful finned unusual shape. Miss Latimer asked to pull out the stranger from the heap. Nothing like it has not seen before. This coloring, fins, scales, jaws unusual shape … Each fin is composed of individual finlets, as if collected in the brush, and the tail ended with a triangular blade. On the question of whether he had to deal with before anything like this, man-tralmeyster that for 30 years he never came across such a fish with fins that resemble a human hand, and she looked more like a large lizard than a fish. fish was weighed and measured: it was about 1.5 m and pulled by 57.5 kg. In addition, one amateur photographer has done at the request of Miss Latimer few shots, but, as often happens in such cases, unique, load the notorious law of meanness: the film was subsequently illuminated. By the time when Miss Latimer saw the fish, the latter had been dead for several hours, and the weather was hot December in the Southern Hemisphere – the middle of the summer, so that from it there was a strong odor, and a peculiar, not like the smell of normal become rotten fish. The entire interior extraordinary exhibit had to be thrown. Thumbing through directories available on hand, Miss Latimer did not find in them any information that would allow identifying which fell into her hands curiosity. She produced the usual in such cases, measurements, made a sketch and persuaded the chairman of the board of the museum to allow her to make an order for stuffed fish. Simultaneously Miss Latimer sent a letter to a great scientist, ichthyologist, a professor in the College of Grahams town and his long-time good friend JL B. Smith who lived in the south of the country, in Knysna, in the 560 miles of East London. In the letter she described the mysterious fish and escorted him to make it a picture. This is how your response to this letters the professor Smith: Day 3 January 1938 one of our friends brought us from a large stack of mail, mostly Christmas and New Year greetings. We dismantled the mail and sat down to read his letters each. Among my letters, dedicated, as always, mostly exams and fishes, and the letter were stamped by an East London museum – I immediately recognized the handwriting of Miss Latimer. First Page was characterized by the usual requests to help with the definition. I turned and saw a piece of picture. Strange … I do not like any one fish of our seas … Actually anyone known to me the fish. Rather, a kind of lizard. And suddenly my brain like a bomb went off: because of the letter and sketch on the screen, a vision of the ancient inhabitants of the seas, fish that do not exist for a long time, which lived in the distant past and are known to us only the fossil, petrified ostyam. Do not be crazy! – Strict orders to myself. But the feelings were arguing with common sense, I can not take my eyes off sketches, trying to see more of what it really was. Hurricane flood of thoughts and feelings shielded me from the rest. Suddenly someone said my name, far, far away, then again, closer and louder, more insistent … It was my wife. She looked anxiously at me across the table, and just as anxiously watched her mother, who was sitting next to her. To my surprise, I found myself standing. His wife told me after that, lost in the reading of the letter, she suddenly felt anxious, looked up and saw, I stand with a piece of paper and in a daze looking at him. Light shines from behind me, and shone through the thin paper image of a fish. – For God’s sake, what happened? – She asked. I woke up, looked again at the letter and the sketch and said slowly: – This is from Miss Latimer. If only I was not crazy, she found something out of the ordinary. Do not think me mad, but it seems that it is an ancient fish that everyone thinks extinct millions of years ago! .. Professor not crazy. It really was the ancient coelacanth lobe-finned fish, supposedly extinct a long time ago. But both he and Miss Latimer lucky to have found this confidence only after wary thought of all that remained of the instance. And only then Dr. Smith and Ms. Latimer decided to make a public statement about his discovery. Coelacanth was caught in the coastal waters near East London in the shallows near the mouth of the river Chalumny, so Dr. Smith suggested the name in honor of the fish, who opened it, and in memory of the place where it was caught: Latimeria chalumnae – coelacanth chalumna. The proposal did not meet with opposition, and under this name Reborn the representative squad is now known throughout the scientific world. Notice of sensational discovery has been met in different ways. Part of the scientific community welcomed him and sincerely congratulated Miss Latimer, and Professor Smith. But there were those who, based on the presumption that this can not be, because it can never be, did not believe in the authenticity of identification caught instance, have expressed doubts about the competence of professors and even suspected him of deliberate falsification. Played into the hands of skeptics that the coelacanth was caught in a single instance, and in spite of all attempts to get at least one more, she literally sunk in the water. Only after a long 14 years, the owner and captain of a fishing schooner Eric Hunt, who became the faithful companion and friend of Dr. Smith and Ms. Latimer, caught the 20 December 1952 half-meter coelacanth off the coast of the island of the Comoros archipelago Pamanzi it lies between the northern tip of the island of Madagascar and the eastern coast of the African continent. In the next 8 years has been caught yet 16 Latimer in length from 109 to 180 cm and a weight of 19.5 to 95 kg, and all – in the coastal waters of the Comoros, with a depth of 150 to 390 m then no reason to doubt that these fish crossopterygian supposedly extinct 50 million years ago, alive and well today, there is not even the most Hard-nosed skeptics. Later, there were caught about 100 individuals. The government announced Comoros coelacanth public domain. And in 1992, Fossil fish caught and off the coast of Mozambique. However, this sensation associated with the coelacanth, not ended. In one of the rooms of the American magazine for the year 1999, it was reported that in 1998, 60 years after the capture of the first copy of the coelacanth, discovered a new, Second generation of intact-edge that lives 6,000 miles from Africa, off the coast of Indonesia

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