Tiktaalik roseae: Early elpistostegid species from North America that transitioned from water to landCourtesy National Science FoundationNew fossil footprints show that our earliest land dwelling ancestors walked on land 18 million years earlier than we previously thought. The earliest land “exploring” vertebrates, called elpistostegids (say that three times fast) were lobe-finned fish that could move on land and breath air but needed to live in an aquatic environment, much like the modern day mudskipper or lungfish. The earliest fully land “dwelling” vertebrates, called tetrapods, were the progenitors of all later amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals, including humans.
Gambian MudskipperCourtesy Bjorn Christian Torrissen and Wikimedia Commons
Palaeontologists had previously identified tetrapods through fossilized skeletons. Now they have found fossilized footprints left behind by the animal in Poland (click the link for the photo). These footprints predate the earliest skeletal evidence for tetrapods and are causing scientists to reassess our knowledge of the vertebrate transition from water to land. The fossil footprints show that the animal was almost three feet in length and lived in the marine intertidal zone during the Middle Devonian period, 395 million years ago. It was previously believed that tetrapods lived in freshwater settings. Scientists now also think that the elpistostegids may not have been a short-lived transitional stage of vertebrate but may have lived alongside the tetrapods for nearly 10 million years.
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Woody McBreairty's picture
Woody McBreairty says:

New scientific discoveries continue to boggle the mind. How can evolution be denied when there is increasing evidence of it? For those who feel the need to believe the Bible over science, sorry, but facts & concrete proof cannot be denied. There is not a single scintilla of evidence of intelligent design; that doesn't mean there is none, it means that we have to accept physical & scientific proof first and somehow interject our religious beliefs into the realty of science, each of us in his own way, because there are mountians of scientific facts & not a single scintilla of proof of spontaneous & whimsical creation None!

posted on Fri, 01/15/2010 - 10:25pm
Professor Emeritus P. Bagnolo's picture

Well, Woody, I won a Ford Foundation Fellowship in Anthropology in 1972/1973, and they did then and still do call it the "THEORY of EVOLUTION."
Part of my extended argument concerning mtDNA (Mitochondrial DNA)
had nothing to do with the Bible, it was based upon my contention, that neither Neanderthal, nor Home Erectus, apparently at the time our immediate ancestors, would display our mtDNA. The 1987 Berkeley study
showed that I was on the right track and the latest studies
appear to confirm that. plus:



Thus since the time span squeeze excludes an entire organism the complexity of Homo sapiens sapiens being mutated, the string of direct DNA Meta-binary; class Meta-migration is for all intents and purposes dead in the water despite excuses by some "Conservative educators."

The Bible is not a scientific document, it is a history written by ancient, primitive, non-scientists. I might point out, however, that the attempts to find the "Driving Engine," for the quantum within our universe, having failed, a number of prominent cosmologists have become at least believers in a "Source" jump starting the road to the Big Bang.

posted on Sat, 01/16/2010 - 11:56am
Tim's picture
Tim says:

Woody, I find it strange that you have decided to bash creationists and claim increased evidence for evolutionists when this news story clearly causes a major setback for evolutionists.

All the stories of how Tiktaalik became the first land walker now seem to be quite incorrect.

posted on Wed, 01/20/2010 - 2:17am
Woody McBreairty's picture
Woody McBreairty says:

Evolution is scientific. The intelligence of the mind's eye shows us & helps us understand how life evolved - the ape is the closest human relative from which we evolved. I agree the "universe" has a blueprint, an evolutionary plan that is unfolding - however, the idea that the universe was instantly created by "someone" is ludicrous on it's face. "A creator" implies that there was life before creation, that doesn't make sense and therein lies the mystery of "evolution" and brings us closer to understandin the "big bang" theory

posted on Mon, 07/04/2011 - 12:08am

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