Newly Discovered Petrified Forest Unveiled in Northern Evia

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In a significant archaeological endeavour led by the Museum of Natural History of the Lesvos Petrified Forest, a new petrified forest has been unearthed in the Kerasia area of northern Evia. The excavation, sanctioned by Culture Minister Lina Mendoni, has shed light on an ancient ecosystem dating back to the Miocene period.

Commencing in October 2022 and ongoing to date, the excavation has revealed a plethora of fossilised trunks and leafy horizons across a 1.7-hectare area, cordoned off by the Region of Central Greece. Numerous fossil fragments have been discovered within lake sediments, totaling over 160 fossilised trunks and tree parts thus far.

Professor Nikos Zouros, director of the Museum of Natural History of the Petrified Forest of Lesvos and lead excavator, reported to the Athens-Macedonian News Agency that the excavations have uncovered 58 fossilised trunks and significant portions thereof. These findings, he notes, paint a vivid picture of a subtropical forest dominated by coniferous and broad-leaved trees, emblematic of northern Evia during the Miocene era.

Zouros explains that the exceptional preservation of these fossils is owed to ideal conditions for fossilisation, wherein plant matter underwent molecular replacement by silicon, preserving morphological features such as bark and growth rings. Additionally, microscopic analysis of the petrified wood's internal structure facilitates the identification of tree genus and species.

Anticipated to invigorate tourism and educational endeavours in the region, the discovery is poised to attract both visitors and school groups. Plans to showcase the petrified forest include outdoor exhibits and periodic exhibitions to showcase findings, all financed by the Green Fund as part of the broader "Biodiversity Conservation Actions Innovative Actions - Smart Cities - Other Actions" initiative within the Reconstruction Plan for North Evia.

(Source: Amna)

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