Trans-Tasman living fossils found according to ABC News in Science, 1 October 2012. A group of Australian and New Zealand scientists have studied plant fossils found in New Zealand and identified them as a species of Microcachrys, a small conifer now only found growing in the mountains of Tasmania, Australia. This plant is considered to be a living fossil that goes back to the time of dinosaurs. The newly discovered fossils are leafy material dated as 20 million years old, making them the oldest fossils of this plant, and the first to be found outside Australia.

The fossils were identified as Microcachrys because they have the same distinctive square arrangement of leaves and the same waxy leaf cuticles as the living plants. The living plants growing in Tasmania are named Microcachrys tetragona. The researchers named the fossils Microcachrys novae-zelandiae. Prior to this finding the fossil evidence for microcachrys–like plants consisted of pollen grains in sediments from Tasmania, Patagonia, southern Africa and Antarctica, indicating these plants were once more widespread.


Editorial Comment: In spite of the different species name given to the New Zealand fossil plant, the fact is, it was recognised because it had the same structure as the living Australian plant. It brings to light a reminder that it is the text book naming of species which gives rise to the origin of many species and provides most evidence for their evolution. But this plant has not evolved. This is why it is called a “living fossil,” a term was coined by Charles Darwin to describe living things that were the same as their fossils. But this means they haven’t evolved, and are no use to Darwin’s theory. Living fossils are actually proof that living things have multiplied after their kind, just as Genesis says. (Ref. botany, stasis)

The most famous Australian living fossil is the Wollemi pine, supposedly unchanged for 65 million years, and there are numerous other lesser known examples. Over the years Creation Research has written about living fossils plants and animals from all over the world. Read about these in the article Living Fossils. Download PDF here.

Evidence News 10 October 2012