A species of clam that was only known from fossils dating back 28,000 years was discovered to be alive off the coast of California.
The small, translucent bivalve mollusk was found living intertidally near the Santa Barbara coast, ScienceAlert reported. It was determined to be Cymatioa cooki, and it had been discovered as a fossil in 1937 by a local woman named Edna Cook. The fossils come from a well-studied archaeological site dated to between 28,000 and 36,000 years old.
“It’s not all that common to find alive a species first known from the fossil record, especially in a region as well-studied as Southern California,” said Jeff Goddard, research associate at UC Santa Barbara’s Marine Science Institute and the co-author of the study detailing the discovery.