PHILIPPE PLAILLY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PHILIPPE PLAILLY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Fossilised bacteria. Coloured Scanning Electron Micrograph (SEM) of a type of fossilised bacterial cell. Some fossilised bacteria are the earliest evidence of life on earth. This rod-shaped cell (at centre) was isolated from a sample of ocean sediment & is 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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