Twenty-Million-Year-Old Petrified Trees Discovered During Excavations on Lesvos

The gigantic, 20-million-year-old petrified tree trunks found on Lesvos. Source: AMNA

Two gigantic petrified trees, lying one on top of another, were discovered during recent salvage excavations conducted by the Petrified Forest Natural History Museum of Lesvos in cooperation with PPC Renewables.

The 21- and 23-meter (75 foot) long trunks, from coniferous trees, are the largest ever found anywhere in the vicinity of Lesvos’ petrified forest.

According to museum director and University of Aegean professor Nikos Zouros, the petrified trees “are probably ancestral forms of sequoia trees, and further research will confirm the details of their identity.”

Dr. Zouros declared “the finds are spectacular, as they reveal the ferocity of the volcanic eruptions that took place around 20 million years ago in the region that is Lesvos today. The gigantic trees were uprooted and swept away by huge mud flows of volcanic materials, resulting in one ending up on top of the other where they were found.”

Excavations were taking place in order for the PPC Renewables Company to replace nine outdated wind turbines with three new ones. Four, much smaller, tree trunks which were also uncovered in the wind turbine areas were “treated according to scientific methods, and transferred to the museum,” Zouros stated.

The two largest petrified trees found near one of the wind turbines will be left in place and will eventually be shown to the public in situ.

All the discoveries were made at a site adjacent to an existing protected area in which  petrified trunks had been discovered previously.

Source: AMNA