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X-ray tomographic picture (false colours) of fossil thread-like red algae

Helen Briggs

BBC Environment correspondent

The origins of plants may go back hundreds of millions of years earlier than previously thought, according to fossil evidence.

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'First bird' prepared for Japan show

'First bird' prepared for Japan show

London's Natural History Museum sends its priceless fossil of the "first bird" - Archaeopteryx - on tour.

'Six jaws and snapping teeth'

Scientists find extinct giant worm the size of a man

A previously undiscovered species of an extinct giant worm with terrifying snapping jaws and teeth has been identified by an international team of scientists. Researchers from Bristol University in the UK, Lund University in Sweden and the Royal Ontario Museum in Canada studied the 400 million year-old fossil, which had been left in storage at the museum since the mid-1990s, and discovered the remains of a giant extinct bristle worm (the marine relatives of earthworms and leeches). Lead researcher Luke Parry explains that the new species is believed to have grown to two metres in length and possessed the largest jaws ever recorded in this type of creature; complete with teeth. (Image: Artist rendition of extinct giant worm. Credit: James Ormiston)