The Cambrian Explosion and the Evolutionary Origin of Animals

Paul Smith
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Our understanding of the evolutionary origin of animals has changed dramatically in recent years. Continuing the talk series from the Oxford Natural History Museum, the museum director Prof. Paul Smith will look at the beginning of animal life, with particular attention to the Sirius Passet fossil site in the north of Greenland. The exceptionally preserved fossils from this site have been key in the development of our understanding of the ‘Cambrian Explosion’. Paul will discuss evidence for the timing of the origin of animals, as well as the evolution of modern marine ecosystems and food webs. Prepare to journey back in time more than half a billion years…

If you would like an introduction to the topic before this live talk, find out more about when animals first appeared in this short video: When do we see the major animal groups first appear in the fossil record?