Australasian Science: Australia's authority on science since 1938

The First Breath

Gogonasus

Gogonasus, the 380-million-year-old fossil sarcopterygian fish from Gogo in Western Australia, had large spiracles on its head to enable it to breathe air. Illustration: Brian Choo

By John Long

The African reedfish Polypterus has revealed how breathing first evolved in terrestrial animals, and perhaps how the structures of the ear first formed.

To view this article subscribe or purchase a yearly pass here.