Ex-US President Barack Obama's love for science helped scientists to name ancient fossil of sea creature

Fossil named after obama
University of California-Riverside website

An ancient fossil of a marine sea creature which could have roamed across the depth of ocean's surface 500 million years back has received a rare honour. The creature which has been scientifically named Obamus coronatus, a tribute to former US president Barack Obama for his passion for science.

As per scientists from the University of California-Riverside, the tiny disc-shaped creature measured just.5 inches and it had raised spiral grooves on its outer surface. Researchers believe that this tiny creature had spent its entire life on the ocean floor, as it hardly shifted the location.

Researchers at the University of California-Riverside also discovered another egg-shaped critter during their study. The creature has been named Attenborites janeae after legendary English naturalist and broadcaster Sir David Attenborough for his love towards palaeontology.

The study, which was published in the Australian Journal of Earth Sciences, revealed that both these animals were the earliest groups of life which started harbouring on the earth. The pathbreaking discovery was made in a remarkably well-preserved fossil bed in a mountain range in Southern Australia. The researchers have now named the fossil bed, 'Alice's Restaurant Bed', an honour to the Arlo Guthrie song and its most popular lyric 'You can get anything you want at Alice's restaurant'.

Even though these species no longer exist in our planet, these soft-bodied animals have embedded their past marks as fossils cast on sandstones.

After the discovery, Mary Droser, a palaeontologist at the University of California-Riverside said that she has never seen such a beautifully preserved bed with so many high quality and rare specimens, including Obamus and Attenborites ever in her career which spanned for 30 years.

A few days ago, the Singapore government has also honoured Indian prime minister Narendra Modi by naming an orchid after him to mark his visit to the National Orchid Garden during Singapore Summit 2018. The rare orchid is now known as Dendrobium Narendra Modi.

This article was first published on June 20, 2018