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Life During the Paleozoic

The Cambrian explosion was the sudden appearance of great diversity related to modern species.

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Velvet and Slime
Teacher Contributed

Velvet and Slime


Living Cambrian Fauna

Student Exploration

Now That's A Slime Cannon!

Many of you have heard of mass extinctions and "primitive" ancestors, and some of you have probably figured out life just isn't that simple. Velvet worms are a group of animals that are using a body plan that goes all the way back to the start of the Cambrian Era (542 MYA - 488 MYA), if not older. While many new organisms have arisen since this time, the Velvet Worms seem to be quite happy with their "primitive" body plan.

Go here to find out more:

Extension Investigation

Use the below resources to answer the following questions.

  1. Why do some scientists feel Velvet Worms occupy a space between Arthropods and Annelids?
  2. What kinds of habitats do Velvet Worms inhabit?
  3. Geographically where are they found?
  4. How does the climate where Velvet worms are found compare to the climate during the Cambrian Era?
  5. How does a Velvet Worm use its "slime cannon"?

Resources Cited

NatGeoWild Youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mrL2A7my1fc

precarious333 Youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PNw5RZ5R0U8

BBC Life Youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FbVDYSiH-Vw

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