Fossilised bacteria. Coloured Scanning Electron Micrograph (SEM) of a type of fossilised bacteria. Some fossilised bacteria are the earliest evidence of life on earth. These rod- shaped cells (yellow) were isolated from a sample of ocean sediment. They are being used to study the relationship between bacteria and marine sediments. This is part of a collection of bacterial fossils discovered by sedimentologist Frances Westall. She has found such fossils in rock and sediment samples from around the world. The earliest are dated at about 3.5 billion years old. Isolated from the Bay of Borgneuf, Nantes, France. Magnification: unknown.
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