Fossilized fish balance organs

Fossilized fish balance organs

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Credit: SINCLAIR STAMMERS/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Fossilised fish balance organs. Fossil otoliths from an unknown fish species. Otoliths are small particles of protein and calcium carbonate that lie in the otic vesicle (ear) of fish and in the inner ear of other vertebrates, including mammals. They are attached to a gelatinous membrane. Their movement allows an animal to sense the position of its head in relation to gravity during movement and rest.

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Keywords: anatomy, ancient, animal, animal body, animals, balance organ, calcium carbonate, capsule, ear, earth science, fish, fossil, fossil vertebrate, fossilised, fossilized, fossils, geology, inner, many, multiple, old, otic, otolith, otoliths, palaeontology, paleontology, preserved, protein, stone, vertebrates, zoology

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