Q & A
Bony skull ornaments appeared in most rapidly growing species, new research suggests.
Everyone is once again asking, “Can we clone dinosaurs?” The answer is easy: No. But there’s more to the story than just cloning.
Paleontologists use fossils to try to figure out three main things about fossils: Identity and origin of the fossil, the fossil’s environment, and what the fossil can tell us about the history of the earth.
People have been very interested in fossil bones for a very long time. The ancient Chinese thought fossil bones were the bones of magical dragons.
There are two main types of fossils, body fossils and trace fossils. Body fossils are the preserved remains of a plant or animal’s body. Trace fossils are the remains of the activity of an animal, such as preserved track ways, footprints, fossilized egg shells,...
There are many other types of fossils. Compression fossils form when leaves become trapped between layers of sediment (mud, fine sand, or volcanic ash) and get smashed flat.
Scientists can use scientific tests to determine the age of rocks near the fossils. The types of tests are called radiometric dating. There are certain types of elements that are radioactive.
Paleontology is the science dealing with the fossils of long-deceased animals and plants that lived up to billions of years ago. It’s an interdisciplinary field involving geology, archaeology, chemistry, biology, archaeology and anthropology.
Paleontology may be one of the coolest careers to break into, but it’s far from the easiest.