See how it all began (but please don't visit!)

A news article on Nature today reports a find of living, growing stromatolites in an Andean saline lake (first image). Stromatolites are layered growths of cyanobacteria (photosynthesizing algae), and constitute some of the oldest (3.5 Gya!) macroscopic fossils known (second image).

Update: My writeup above might be a bit misleading. This is not the only known stromatolite colony; Shark Bay, Australia, is the most well known, and there are a few in South Africa. This discovery is important both because of the altitude, and because it's an inland site without contamination.

Note: If you don't understand some of the words above, open a new browser window, type "wikipedia" in the search bar, then cut and paste the big words into Wikipedia.

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KentsOkay8 years ago
TIGHT Wold be far more interesting found on Mars, but I'll take my microscopic ancestors any way they come...
It is unlikely that any organic material will be found on Mars. More can be found on such planets as Jupiter and Saturn.
I've got my 50 cents on europa....
There's all kinds of weird creatures in Europe, like for instance- Kiteman! Oh, EUROPA...... I get it.
I will politely forego all of the "Uranus" jokes.....
You missed out - In the IRC room Goodhart, myself, yokunza, and others where puning on that...
Yes, but that is somewhat private whereas this is a more public forum ;-)
You may have Europa. I'm investing in Titan which, for a moon, has a significant atmosphere, and despite the poisonous gases in that atmosphere, it also contains a significant amount of N2. Which, in itself, is significant.
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