After living a rather uneventful life in the oceans of the planet about 500-million years ago, a newly-discovered creature has the honor to be named after a former United States President. Researchers have given it the name Obamus coronatus, in honor of Barack Obama and his famous passion for science. The “coronatus” part in the name translates to “crowned”. In fact, this was a very small, disc-shaped aquatic animal with spiral grooves on it. It did not have an eventful life because it spent all of it embedded on the ocean floor. It probably never even moved.
What’s even more interesting is that another small ancient animal was also recently discovered. This critter was egg-shaped and most likely looked like a raisin. The researchers called this one Attenborites janeae, in honor of British naturalist and broadcaster Sir David Attenborough. The second part of the name is a reference to Jane Fargher, one of the owners of the property where the experts discovered the fossils. It’s worth noting that both of these are among the oldest animals to ever roam the Earth, or its oceans. They were found in a southern Australia mountain range, in a very well-preserved fossil bed.
The ancient creature named after former President Obama
According to paleontologist Mary Droser, who was part of the effort to discover these ancient creatures, in 30 years, nobody has seen such a remarkably well-preserved fossil bed that has so many beautiful and rare specimens. The same researchers who named the creatures, and who have a very profound passion for pop culture, also named this fossil bed “Alice’s Restaurant Bed”. This is a nod to the to the Arlo Guthrie song which goes “You can get anything you want at Alice’s Restaurant”. It’s also important to note that these particular species no longer exist in today’s world.
Image source: pxhere