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Archive | Miguasha: the treasures of a UNESCO heritage site

Natasha Kumar By Natasha Kumar Nov20,2023

Archives | Miguasha: the treasures of a UNESCO heritage site

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The “Elpistostege” fossil, which lived 380 million years ago, marks the transition between aquatic and terrestrial life. It was discovered in 2013 on the Miguasha site.


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In 1999, Miguasha National Park was included on the prestigious UNESCO World Heritage List as a natural site. Return to the archives on the exceptional finds which bear witness to a significant period in the evolution of living beings.

Miguasha, in Gaspésie, is a fossil park discovered in 1842. The collection and study of its fossils began in 1880.

In the Mi'kmaw language, Miguasha means red earth. The site was probably named so because of the color of its cliffs.

On December 4, 1999, UNESCO inscribed the Miguasha site on the World Heritage List as a natural site.

“Inscription on the World Heritage List recognizes the outstanding universal value of a natural or cultural property, so that it is protected for the benefit of humanity. »

In this radio archive of the show Planète RCIof December 11, 1999, host Adrien Lachance discusses the nomination of Miguasha National Park as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

The fossil site of Miguasha in Gaspésie was recognized in 1999 as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

He speaks with paleontologist Marius Arsenault about the reasons that led to such recognition.

For Marius Arsenault, of all the sites of the Devonian period, that of Miguasha is the most representative, and recognition was given for this reason.

The Devonian period is a pivotal moment, also called the Age of Fish period. This era is so nicknamed in reference to the evolutionary proliferation that fish carried out during this stage of evolution.

It is during this phase that certain species develop a type of fin allowing them to move short distances out of the water.

The fossils found at the Miguasha site represent five of the six major groups of fish from the Devonian period.

Miguasha is one of the main centers for the study of fossils on the planet.

In 1991, a major conference was held there which brought together paleontologists from all over the world. Journalist Marc Lavoie presented a report on the event to the Téléjournal on June 17, 1991. Renowned scientists are in awe of the fossils observed.

< p class="StyledImageCaptionLegend-sc-57496c44-2 sbxsP">Report by journalist Marc Lavoie on a conference of paleontologists held in Miguasha.

I am very impressed with the quality of the specimens.

A quote from Erik Jarvik, Swedish paleontologist

For years, the prince of Miguasha, a fish named Eusthenopteron foordi, is the fossil in which we believed to see the ancestor of first amphibians.

On October 30, 2013, the Téléjournalbroadcast a report by journalist Jean-Pierre Rogel, who presented the discovery of&#x27 ;a remarkable fossil on the Miguasha site.

Report by journalist Jean-Pierre Rogel on the discovery of an exceptional fossil on the Miguasha site

“An extraordinary, very well preserved 1.6 meter long fish fossil, an Elpistostege”.

Dating back some 380 million years, this fish is probably the closest thing to the first animals to live on dry land.< /p>

This fossil sheds light on a momentous event in the history of evolution, the passage vertebrates from water to dry land.

A quote from Jean-Pierre Rogel, journalist

The specimen evokes a crocodile or a lizard. It would be the fish closest to tetrapods, animals with lungs and four legs.

He has since been considered the emblem and the new prince of Miguasha.

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Natasha Kumar

By Natasha Kumar

Natasha Kumar has been a reporter on the news desk since 2018. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining The Times Hub, Natasha Kumar worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my 1-800-268-7116

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