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Andrew Alden

Stromatolite from Nunavut

By January 15, 2013

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stromatoliteLast week a reader presented me with this wonderful photo of an Archean stromatolite from northern Canada. Stromatolites are the remains of long-lived colonies of bacteria ("blue-green algae"). They're rare in rocks from the last half-billion years, but for about 2 billion years before that stromatolites were the most complex life form on Earth. See a close-up of this specimen in the Stromatolite Picture Gallery.
Photo courtesy Hans-Jürgen Kirstein, all rights reserved


January 21, 2013 at 6:13 am
(1) harry iyerak says:

I have a question regarding stromatolite,while prospecting in a creek we came upon looks like core at tens of feet long and bundled up neatly when I break them they appear to have spirals in them,is that sometime the earth was moving side ways or shifting some what that they formed and exposed later from erosion,are there different kinds of stromatolites that are formed on our earth,the one in the picture looks awesome and old?

January 21, 2013 at 2:48 pm
(2) Geology Guide says:

Harry, what you describe sounds more like ammonites, a kind of extinct seashell. although it might not be a fossil at all. I can’t tell anything without more details and good photographs.

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