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How is it that a Museum can have 1,200+ fossils of a particular species in its collection since the 1960's... and not even know what it is? For decades, it was thought the 'Tully monster' -- a bizarre animal that lived 307 million years ago -- was an invertebrate, like a kind of worm. But in March, Field Museum scientists helped finally crack the mystery of the monster, to reveal it's actually related to lamprey fish. BOOM.
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"The 'Tully monster' is a vertebrate," Nature, 16 March 2016. See the abstract here:

For even more detailed information on the history of the Tully monster and other Mazon Creek fossils, watch 'Tully: Monster vs Method'

Want to know more about the Tully monster, and other specimens from this collection? Check them out on our website:
Fossil Invertebrates:


Big thanks to Scott Lidgard and Paul Mayer for entertaining one more interview about the Tully monster!
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Producer, Writer, Creator, Host:
Emily Graslie

Director, Editor, Graphics, Sound:
Brandon Brungard

Editor, Camera:
Sheheryar Ahsan

This episode is supported by and filmed on location at:
The Field Museum in Chicago, IL

This episode of The Brain Scoop was made possible by The Harris Family Foundation, with additional support from the Lauer Foundation for Paleontology, Science and Education NFP.
Hey! We're here with Paul.  We're gonna bust some nodules!


We are back with Scott on the invertebrate paleontology department at the Field Museum.