Illuminated on Flickr.
In the darkness of the valley, the Sun finds its way to two frozen trees.
Set: After Autumn Falls
These are the first photos of some of the countless treasures found in the extraordinary 298-million-year-old forest discovered under coal mine in Wuda, Inner Mongolia, China.
The beautiful images show “the exceptional preservation of the fossil plants of the peat-forming swamp forest.” The research team has found entire plants and trees, allowing them to confirm previously published reconstructions. It’s also the first time ever that they have found fossilized tree and plant communities arranged in a forest.
A volcanic eruption buried the entire forest under ash, preserving it in this exquisite state, never seen before. The lead scientists classify it as a “Permian vegetational Pompeii” in the title of their research. According to University of Pennsylvania paleobotanist Hermann Pfefferkorn, it’s an extraordinary “time capsule.”
It’s marvelously preserved. We can stand there and find a branch with the leaves attached, and then we find the next branch and the next branch and the next branch. And then we find the stump from the same tree. That’s really exciting.
Here are some of their findings.
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