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Remains of ancient life found beneath Antarctic ice

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posted on Jan, 18 2019 @ 07:58 PM
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Scientists drilling into a buried Antarctic lake 600 kilometres from the South Pole have found surprising signs of ancient life: the carcasses of tiny animals preserved under a kilometre of ice.

The crustaceans and a tardigrade, or ‘water bear’ — all smaller than poppy seeds — were found in Subglacial Lake Mercer, a body of water that had lain undisturbed for thousands of years. Until now, humans had seen the lake only indirectly, through ice-penetrating radar and other remote-sensing techniques. But that changed on 26 December when researchers funded by the US National Science Foundation (NSF) succeeded in melting a narrow portal through the ice to the water below.

Discovering the animals there was “fully unexpected”, says David Harwood, a micro-palaeontologist at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln who is part of the expedition — known as SALSA (Subglacial Antarctic Lakes Scientific Access).

The intrigue deepened when biologists realized that at least some of the beasts from Lake Mercer were landlubbers. The eight-legged tardigrade resembles species known to inhabit damp soils. What looked like worms were actually the tendrils of a land-dwelling plant or fungus. And although the scientists couldn’t rule out the possibility that the crustaceans had been ocean denizens, they might just as easily have come from small, ice-covered lakes.


Remains of ancient life found beneath Antarctic ice



They found a "shrimp-like crustacean with legs still attached" and a tardigrade in the small sample of mud. It is possible that there are still tiny creatures alive in the lake now, a kilometre under the ice. There is enough O2 in the lake water to support life.

They are going to try and find out how old the the animals in the sample are with carbon dating and will try to sequence bits of the DNA. I am sure there are other interesting things deep under the ice.

Imagine what they could find on the bottom of this lake if they could get down there by deep-sea diving or in a small research sub.






edit on 18-1-2019 by LookingAtMars because: (no reason given)




posted on Jan, 18 2019 @ 08:09 PM
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Not surprising at all. The earth was extremely hot in its younger days.

I would imagine at one point in its evolution that life was abundant near the poles and less so closer to the equator because it was too hot there for most species of animals and plants.

Tardigrades are extremely robust organisms that can live in most places on the earth. If you're never seen one, they resemble a person wearing an inflatable sumo wrestler costume...but with eight legs.
edit on 18-1-2019 by TheTruthRocks because: Reasons



posted on Jan, 18 2019 @ 08:16 PM
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a reply to: TheTruthRocks

They are really cool looking and can survive very extreme conditions. They expel the water from their body and hibernate when conditions get too extreme. They go into a kind of suspended animation.



edit on 18-1-2019 by LookingAtMars because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 18 2019 @ 08:19 PM
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I love this. Figure why not due to the oasis of plant life and more being found under the ice. Indeed Imagine what other wonders can be found.



posted on Jan, 18 2019 @ 09:09 PM
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Great post Star & Flag.



posted on Jan, 18 2019 @ 09:18 PM
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a reply to: LookingAtMars

Great news and amazing find!

We are just now getting to know our little planet Earth.

So much yet to explore!!!




posted on Jan, 18 2019 @ 09:58 PM
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a reply to: LookingAtMars

Let's put it this way. Would anyone be shocked if primitive forms of life evolved on Mars? It's has the necessary ingredients for Life as we know them. Let alone other variants of life that we haven't discovered like how we found the Black smoker sulfur living cycle in the deep ocean. I would think the Salty Brine water and the Sub surface Permafrost would be the place to look on Mars now if any life survived.
edit on 18-1-2019 by pavil because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 18 2019 @ 10:59 PM
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a reply to: LookingAtMars

I find that the Tardigrade was dead to be real interesting. If they can survive zero atmosphere and the vacuum of space why did it die??!

I mean other things are living under the ice a mile down without sunlight so why a tardigrade dead body?

Life is weird!




posted on Jan, 19 2019 @ 03:40 AM
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a reply to: TEOTWAWKIAIFF

Maybe it died of old age and they were not lucky enough to get a live one in the small sample.



posted on Jan, 19 2019 @ 03:48 AM
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a reply to: LookingAtMars

Science commentators are saying the tardi and other stuff could have been brought in by melt water or the undersides of glaciers. It's the same as the archaeology argument for dating ancient artefacts; just because a 10kya diatom is in hole doesn't necessarily make the hole 10k years old. They've got to weigh up all the possibilities. Hopefully they'll get enough DNA to be sure where these biological samples originated.

Also tardigrades are extremophiles, but they ain't immortals.



posted on Jan, 19 2019 @ 04:03 AM
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Lol.. news flash. Poles change all the time.



posted on Jan, 19 2019 @ 04:16 AM
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originally posted by: Pandaram
Lol.. news flash. Poles change all the time.


So are baby's diapers and their stinky contents are equivalent to pole shift theories.



posted on Jan, 19 2019 @ 06:48 AM
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a reply to: Kandinsky




Also tardigrades are extremophiles, but they ain't immortals.


Dam terrorists they pop up everywhere!



posted on Jan, 19 2019 @ 06:51 AM
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a reply to: Kandinsky

The magnetic pole shift has evidence to support it as actual fact.



posted on Jan, 19 2019 @ 07:25 AM
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a reply to: LookingAtMars

So is the findings basically like microbes 🦠? That’s what it sounds like.

If so, doesn’t seem to surprising as the human body also contains such life. 😂

Just because we cannot see other life forms somewhere doesn’t mean they do not exist. Right?



posted on Jan, 19 2019 @ 09:08 AM
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Oh for crying out loud..have these scientists not watched "Fortitude" ?

Ancient organisms are best left under the ice.




posted on Jan, 19 2019 @ 11:36 AM
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originally posted by: LookingAtMars
a reply to: TheTruthRocks

They are really cool looking and can survive very extreme conditions. They expel the water from their body and hibernate when conditions get too extreme. They go into a kind of suspended animation.




I wonder if their hibernation ability had anything to do with the "bear" part of the nickname "water bear".

I guess not, according to wikipedia...


The name "water bear" comes from the way they walk, reminiscent of a bear's gait.


I also found the following information about tardigrades on Wikipedia to be interesting:



The biggest adults may reach a body length of 1.5 mm (0.059 in), the smallest below 0.1 mm. Newly hatched tardigrades may be smaller than 0.05 mm.


1.5 millimeters is big enough to see and hold in your hand. (assuming they're safe to hold)

Also

All adult tardigrades of the same species have the same quantity of cells (see eutely). Some species have as many as 40,000 cells in each adult, while others have far fewer.


Here is the Wiki link to the article Eutely.

(According to wikipedia...) Eutelic animals have a fixed number of maximum cells, so they grow in size by cell division until they reach their magic number of cells, and then from that point on, they grow by "cell growth", so the number of cells stays the same, but the size of each individual cell increases.

Fascinating.

They are found everywhere. I think the wiki article said there are about 20 to 40 thousand of them in each liter of water on Earth, at least that's how I understood it. If your water comes from the Earth, it has tardigrades. If you purified it or it came from the clouds, it might be tardigrade free... I'm assuming they don't live in the clouds. I don't think anything can hitch a ride on rising (evaporating) water molecules. Maybe bacteria.



posted on Jan, 19 2019 @ 01:46 PM
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a reply to: Kandinsky

Star, you the man, !.......

Like the way you put it......diapers....
edit on 19-1-2019 by GBP/JPY because: IN THE FINE TEXAS TRADITION



posted on Jan, 20 2019 @ 12:51 PM
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a reply to: surfer_soul

True.


I took the member's post as referring to the old claim that the whole Earth's crust spins off its axis. Not a magnetic pole shift, but an entire, physical shift of the poles. It was popular in the 90s with claims of ancient mammals (like mammoths) being found insta-frozen with fresh, unchewed flowers and leaves in their mouths. One minute they're chomping on grasses in a temperate climate and the next they're swooshed off to the frozen north and are freeze-dried in seconds.



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