50-million year-old nummulite exhibited in SE Turkey

By Sukru Gunduz

DIYARBAKIR, Turkey (AA) – A recently discovered 50-million-year-old nummulite, a large lens-shaped single-celled marine organism (foraminifera), was put on display at a museum in Turkey’s southeastern province.

The fossil was exhibited at Zoology Museum in Diyarbakir province, which features around 2,000 endemic animals including a hermit ibis, giant reptile and leopard carp.

The nummulite was found by Busra Bektas, a molecular biology student at Dicle University in Diyarbakir, during a family picnic in southeastern Siirt province.

The term “nummulite” means “coin” in Latin.

“Many areas including Anatolia [peninsula of land that today constitutes the Asian portion of Turkey] was underwater previously. When Anatolia rose, fossils appeared,” Ali Satar, a zoology professor at Dicle University, told Anadolu Agency.

“These areas, where fossils exist, could not be able to be searched due to terror incidents. When we do a search in the area, we will find many fossils,” Satar added.

Bektas, who found the nummulite, expressed her excitement about finding such a fossil.

“There are many such things there. I want there to be researched. Because those areas were underwater before. Existence of such organisms in those areas makes me excited,” she said.