Oldest Known Sperm Found In Amber


I knew the job was dangerous when I took it ...
Staff member
Jul 19, 2004
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Out of Bounds
The oldest fossilized sperm discovered to date is circa 100 million years old, and it's remarkably large in comparison with the size of the crustacean who produced it.
Oldest Animal Sperm to Date Was Just Discovered in 100-Million-Year-Old Amber

A 100-million-year-old chunk of amber has revealed the oldest-ever sample of animal sperm, and each individual cell is enormously long.

Even more impressive, this giant sperm - several times larger than human sperm - comes from a shrimp-like crustacean smaller than a poppyseed.

Just shy of 0.6 millimetres, this ancient bivalve belongs to a still-living class of microcrustacean known as ostracods, which are famous for housing sperm up to ten times larger than themselves.

That might sound impossible, but when these microscopic cells are twisted and tangled up into tiny little balls, they can travel through the female reproductive tract easily, fending off other, smaller tangles in competition. ...

It's also the oldest sample of animal sperm by a long shot. While other ostracod fossils from a hundred million years ago have shown hints of giant reproductive organs, we've never before gotten our hands on an actual sample from this time.

In 2014, 16-million-year-old freshwater ostracods, discovered in a cave in Australia, were found containing sperm 1.2 mm long. But the new specimen, discovered in Myanmar, is 83 million years older. In fact, it doubles the age of the oldest unequivocal fossil animal sperm. ...
FULL STORY: https://www.sciencealert.com/oldest...perm-discovered-in-100-million-year-old-amber

Lord Lucan

Justified & Ancient
Feb 17, 2017
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There's probably a lot of it (sperm that is) around. Take a looks at this article & video on the flourishing Amber markets of China:

Amber in China
Today, we’ve all heard of the Jurassic World movie series and have had a lot of fun watching scenes of long-extinct dinosaurs wreaking havoc in our modern world. Before that, there was the Jurassic Park series which started the entire adventure. But who remembers how this all came about? What made this story possible? You have to think back to the opening scene of the first move which takes place in an underground mine somewhere in the Dominican Republic. The answer is Amber.

Amber is fossilized tree sap from prehistoric pine trees. Just as in the movie, excavators dig deep into the earth to locate amber and sometimes the gemstones they uncover have prehistoric fossils trapped within. In Jurassic Park, scientists discovered amber with dinosaur DNA preserved inside which they were able to extract and use in cloning experiments. In real life, amber is sold to scientists, collectors, as well as general public, and those which have fossil inclusions are in highest demand. Right now, China is undergoing an “amber craze” and amber merchants have seen the price of amber steadily rise over the past decade when selling to Chinese buyers. Chinese buyers will pay top dollar for amber with insects, lizards, feathers, plant matter, or anything interesting, beautiful, and rare inside.

The Chinese word for amber is hu po 琥珀, pronounced ‘hoo pwoh’, and is roughly translated as “tiger spirit” or “tiger energy”. Ancient Chinese who first discovered amber and used it for medicinal purposes gave it this name. They believed that when a tiger died, its soul traveled down in the ground and transformed into amber gemstones. It’s hard to say why they believed this but perhaps it has something to do with the affects people experienced from wearing or using the amber for health. Even modern day Chinese say that wearing amber gives the wearer courage and calms the spirit. Amber is used both for ornamental purposes and as medicine where it can be ground into a powder to be ingested.



May 24, 2006
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Post deleted for repetition; Maximus Otter got there first.

Dirty minds stink alike!