Smithsonian Given Fossils of Extremely Early Land Animals

Associated Press

The state of New York on Friday presented the Smithsonian Institution with fossils of some of the earliest land animals, believed to be about 380 million years old.

The fossils were discovered in a piece of mudstone taken from the site of the New York Power Authority's Blenheim-Gilboa Pumped Storage Power Project about 40 miles southwest of Albany, N.Y.

Scientists said that the fossils may provide important evidence that animal life appeared on land much earlier than generally believed. The fossils include the well-preserved remains of a mite, centipedes and spiderlike creatures.

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