Cylindrical, mostly horizontal, burrows of 20-60 μm diam. and sinusoidal course, found in the middle part of the Early Ordovician (early Floian) Fenxiang Formation in the Hubei Province of China, represent the oldest record of activity by marine nematodes, preceding known nematode body fossils by 70 million years. The burrows are filled with secondarily oxidised pyrite framboids and clay mineral flakes, indicating low oxygen content in the mud and proving that the animals lined their burrows with organic matter, being bacteriovores and mud-eaters. The marine bottom environment enabling such a mode of life originated no earlier than the mid Early Cambrian (approximately 535 million years ago) owing to peristaltic bioturbation, mostly by nemathelminthans of priapulid affinities. Before the so-called ‘Agricultural Revolution’, the bottoms of shallow seas were covered with microbial mats preventing within-sediment animal life. This event imposes the lower time limit on the possible date of origin of nematodes.
Eophasma jurassicum n. g. n. sp., a new fossil nematode of the Sinemurian of Osteno in Lombardy.
Atti della Società Italiana di Scienze Naturali a del Museo Civico di Storia Naturale, Milano124,
Trace fossils from late Precambrian-Early Cambrian strata of southeastern Newfoundland (Canada): temporal and environmental implications.
Journal of Paleontology59,
The biodiversity and biogeography of komokiaceans and other enigmatic foraminiferan-like protists in the deep Southern Ocean.
Deep-Sea Research Part II54,
Surface chemistry and morphology of poorly crystalline iron sulfides precipitated in media containing sulfate-reducing bacteria.
HoltermanM.van der WurffA.van den ElsenS.van MegenH.BongersT.HolovachovO.BakkerJ.HelderJ. (2006).
Phylum-wide analysis of SSU rDNA reveals deep phylogenetic relationships among nematodes and accelerated evolution toward crown clade.
Molecular Biology and Evolution23,
Syringonornus typicus new genus, new species (Enoplida: Leptosomatidae) a marine nematode inhabiting arenaceous tubes.
Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington82,
A high-resolution chemical and structural study of framboidal pyrite formed within a low-temperature bacterial biofilm.
Vertical distribution of meiofauna in sediments from contrasting sites in the Adriatic Sea: clues to the role of abiotic versus biotic control.
Microbioirrigation of marine sediments in dysoxic environments: implications for early sediment fabric formation and diagenetic processes.
The evolutionary history of nematodes: as revealed in stone, amber and mummies. Nematology Monographs & Perspectives 9 (Series Editors:HuntD.J.PerryR.N.).
Leiden, The Netherlands, Brill.
StørmerL. (1963). Gigantoscorpio willsi, a new scorpion from the Lower Carboniferous of Scotland and its associated preying microorganisms. Skrifter utgitt av Det Norske Videnskaps-Akademi i Oslo I. Mat.-Naturv. Klasse Ny Serie 8, 1-171.
Trace fossils from Late Pleistocene varved lacustrine sediments in eastern Lithuania.
Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology272,