That's a even slower rate of change than the town where I grew up!
"The web-like clusters of filament-shaped microbes first appeared in a 2.3 billion-year-old chunk of fossilized mud from Western Australia... also spotted in a second, 1.8 billion-year-old Australian rock — and in modern deep-sea environments off the coasts of Chile and Southern Africa...almost identical to what we see in the ocean now,”
I really enjoy the living fossils. These are older than most. Cycads (300 million years), ginkgos (270 million years), Metasequoia (65 million years), Monkey puzzle (300 million years), crocodiles (85 million years).
But 2.3 billion years? That makes the cycads seem like mere newcomers! The article didn't list the genus and species of the filamentous bacteria. Some sulfur cycling bacteria obtain their energy from the sulfurous expulsions of deep sea volcanic vents, so are not dependent on the sun and photosynthesis for their energy sources. I don't know if that's true for these.
Think maybe it found its niche? Does that mean it never mutated? Or that some of them mutated to bigger and better things, but those that are still around are happy in their niche?