The "Lost" Antarctic lake found the remains of life

Uncover the secrets that hides the history of the planet Earth, it can only be the work of a plurality of research groups. Each of them is engaged in the business - for example, SALSA team is carefully studying the lake, hidden under thick layers of Antarctic ice. In early January, they drilled a kilometer hole in the ice on the isolated Lake Mercer. The result of this work has already given its fruits - scientists have discovered the remains of the water, not only underwater creatures, but also animals and plants that live in the high mountain areas.


According to David Harwood, micropaleontology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, detection of animal carcasses were completely unexpected. Previously, scientists could not make such a discovery, since the research method was visual and involves the study of water samples: they just peered beneath a thick layer of ice using radar and other remote sensing devices.

Animal remains were found in the study of samples from the lake through a microscope. Among them were dead crustaceans and being known as "water bears" or Tardigrada. David Harwood shared that he was surprised by the discovery of some land animals. For example, in the samples were found tardigrada octopus that live in damp soil. Also tendrils of plants and fungi were found. The team believes that these animals lived in the Transantarctic Mountains, located about 50 kilometers from the lake. They are believed to have been washed into the lake during the warming that occurred around 120,000 years ago. During the next cold snap, they were frozen under the kilometer layer of ice and found out just now.

This is a great discovery for scientists, since there is such complexity beneath the ice were found for the first time in history. The lake Uillans located near Mercer, formerly also the remains of living creatures have been found, but it was tiny microbes.

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