New species of ancient arthropods named after the Millennium Falcon from Star Wars

Famous among paleontologists, the Slates Burgess mountain range in the Canadian Rockies has given science a new kind of fossil creature. It is an ancient arthropod called "Cambroraster falcatus" after the spaceship Millennium Falcon from the Star Wars movie saga. They are very similar visually - both have a characteristic rounded silhouette of the shell-shell.

The Burgess Shale was discovered back in 1909 by paleontologist Charles Walcott. The rocks here were formed during the Middle Cambrian, about 508 million years ago. These rocks are so rich in various fossil remains of ancient creatures that in 1980 the region was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

In 2013, a team of paleontologists was able to excavate and identify more than 50 new species of extinct creatures in just 15 days. And now Cambroraster has been found here - one of the largest finds, even though the creature was only 30 cm across. It is distinguished by the presence of a huge shell that occupies almost the entire upper body. By indirect evidence, scientists have determined that this is a predator, and a very highly organized one.

It is believed that the "Millennium Falcon" ransacked the bottom and plowed the top of the silt, getting from there small creatures for food. At the same time, he helped himself with articulated appendages with thorns, that is, he did a rather difficult job. This violates the prevailing notion among scientists that only primitive life forms could exist in the Cambrian era.