Abstract

Living organisms were found in three samples of marine sediment after almost two months of storage in closed jars. Six species of polychaetous annelids and three species of amphipod crustaceans (17 animals) were found. All polychaetes but one were tightly coiled and the amphipods were compactly enrolled; they became normally active when placed in sea water. Observations indicate that coiling or enrollment of invertebrates may often accompany inactivity under anaerobic conditions. Some fossils of polychaetes and amphipods may not be easily recognizable because of compact coiling or curling; also coiled or enrolled fossil invertebrates, including trilobites, may indicate anaerobic conditions at time of death.

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