Lungfish, ancient fish walking underwater may prove evolution, scientists say (Video)

By on Dec 14, 2011 in Animals, Science, United States, Weird Comments

An ancient fish called lungfish was recently seen walking underwater, as shown in the video below, which scientists said it may prove the evolution of life on Earth from water to land.



Lungfish, ancient fish walking underwater
Image Credit: University of Chicago/Proceedings
of the National Academy of Sciences

As noted at Physorg.com on Monday, December 12, 2011, University of Chicago scientists have witnessed the ancient fish walking under the water in an aquarium in their laboratory and put it on video.

According to the report, which was also published at Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences that day, this recent study is the most is the most extensive study of the lungfish walking underwater.

The African lungfish (Protopterus annectens), which is a 230-million-year-old species found in backwaters in countries such as Senegal, was seen using its thin pelvic limbs not only lifting its body but also its ability to move forward, just like using feet in walking.

“The lungfish is in a really great and unique position in terms of how it is related to fishes and to tetrapods,” Heather King, a graduate student and lead author of the study, was quoted on the report.

Lungfish are very closely related to the animals that were able to evolve and come out of the water and onto land, but that was so long ago that almost everything except the lungfish has gone extinct.” He added.

“This is all information we can only get from a living animal, because if you were just to look at the bones, like you would with a fossil, you might not ever know these motions could occur.” Mr. King further explained.

Apparently, King and her colleagues created a special tank, where the activities of the lungfish can be caught on video from the side and below for better analysis, in which the ancient fish also demonstrated both “bounding” motions, where both limbs immediately moved and appeared to be walking like having its own feet.

With this, authors suggest that the recent discovery could show the developments needed for the evolution of life on earth from water to land, which could have started million years ago.


Lungfish, ancient fish walking under the water
Video Credit: University of Chicago/Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences/Sergeytule/YouTube



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