What has no eyes, walked on stilts and died in ‘Paleo Pompeii’? This ancient weirdo.

Paleontologists recently announced the discovery of an “exceptionally well preserved” ancient animal near the eastern shore of Lake Simcoe in southern Ontario, Canada, in a stone quarry that is such a hotbed for marine fossils that scientists have dubbed the area “Paleo Pompeii.”

named Tomlinsonus dimitrii, the species lived by the specimen is part of an extinct group of arthropods known as marrellomorphs that approximately 450 million years ago, during the Ordovician period, the research team reported in a new study. Other echinoderm fossils that are abundant in the area typically mineralized body parts that are more likely to be preserved over time, but this species is entirely soft-bodied, making the discovery all the more startling.

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