The Cambrian Fossils of Chengjiang, China: The Flowering of Early Animal Life
Wiley, 2004 - Science - 233 pages
The Chengjiang biota is one of the most remarkable fossil discoveries ever made. Among the hills and lakes of Yunnan Province, South China, deposits of ancient mudstone, 525 million years old, have yielded a spectacular variety of exquisitely preserved fossils that record the early diversification of animal life. Since the discovery of the first specimens in 1984, many thousands of fossils have been collected, exceptionally preserving not just the shells and carapaces of the animals, but also their soft tissues in fine detail. This special preservation has produced fossils of rare beauty; they are also of outstanding scientific importance as sources of evidence about the origins of the animal groups that have sustained global biodiversity to the present day.
Much of the scientific documentation of the Chengjiang biota is in Chinese, and this is the first book in English to provide fossil enthusiasts with an overview of the fauna. The aim is to introduce professional and amateur paleontologists, and all those fascinated by evolutionary biology, to the aesthetic and scientific quality of the Chengjiang fossils.