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16.3

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Chapter 16
Evidence of Evolution
Section 16.3
© Cengage Learning 2015
16.3 Why Do Biologists Study Rocks and
Fossils?
A
B C
D
E
Figure 16.6 Examples of fossils
A Fossil skeleton of an ichthyosaur that lived about 200 million years ago. These
marine reptiles were about the same size as modern porpoises, breathed air like them,
and probably swam as fast, but the two groups are not closely related.
B Extinct wasp encased in amber, which is ancient tree sap. This 9-mm-long insect
lived about 20 million years ago.
C Fossilized imprint of a leaf from a 260-millionyear- old Glossopteris, a type of plant
called a seed fern.
D Fossilized footprint of a theropod, a name that means “beast foot.” This group of
carnivorous dinosaurs, which includes the familiar Tyrannosaurus rex, arose about 250
million years ago.
E Coprolite (fossilized feces). Fossilized food remains and parasitic worms inside
coprolites offer clues about the diet and health of extinct species. A foxlike animal
excreted this one.
© Cengage Learning 2015
Why Do Biologists Study Rocks and
Fossils? (cont’d.)
• Most fossils are mineralized
– Bones
– Teeth
– Shells
– Seeds
– Spores
© Cengage Learning 2015
Why Do Biologists Study Rocks and
Fossils? (cont’d.)
• Trace fossils can be:
– Footprints and other impressions
– Nests
– Burrows
– Trails
– Eggshells
– Feces
© Cengage Learning 2015
Why Do Biologists Study Rocks and
Fossils? (cont’d.)
• Fossilization
– Begins when an organism or its traces become covered by
sediments/volcanic ash
– After a very long time, pressure and mineralization transform
the remains into rock
– Fossils are found in stacked layers of sedimentary rock
– Younger fossils occur in more recent layers, on top of older
fossils in older layers
© Cengage Learning 2015
Why Do Biologists Study Rocks and
Fossils? (cont’d.)
• The fossil record
– We have fossils for more that 250,000 species
– Fossils are relatively rare, so the fossil record will always be
incomplete
– Most ancient species had no hard parts to fossilize
– Burial site had to escape destructive geologic events
Ad

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16.3

  • 1. Chapter 16 Evidence of Evolution Section 16.3
  • 2. © Cengage Learning 2015 16.3 Why Do Biologists Study Rocks and Fossils? A B C D E Figure 16.6 Examples of fossils A Fossil skeleton of an ichthyosaur that lived about 200 million years ago. These marine reptiles were about the same size as modern porpoises, breathed air like them, and probably swam as fast, but the two groups are not closely related. B Extinct wasp encased in amber, which is ancient tree sap. This 9-mm-long insect lived about 20 million years ago. C Fossilized imprint of a leaf from a 260-millionyear- old Glossopteris, a type of plant called a seed fern. D Fossilized footprint of a theropod, a name that means “beast foot.” This group of carnivorous dinosaurs, which includes the familiar Tyrannosaurus rex, arose about 250 million years ago. E Coprolite (fossilized feces). Fossilized food remains and parasitic worms inside coprolites offer clues about the diet and health of extinct species. A foxlike animal excreted this one.
  • 3. © Cengage Learning 2015 Why Do Biologists Study Rocks and Fossils? (cont’d.) • Most fossils are mineralized – Bones – Teeth – Shells – Seeds – Spores
  • 4. © Cengage Learning 2015 Why Do Biologists Study Rocks and Fossils? (cont’d.) • Trace fossils can be: – Footprints and other impressions – Nests – Burrows – Trails – Eggshells – Feces
  • 5. © Cengage Learning 2015 Why Do Biologists Study Rocks and Fossils? (cont’d.) • Fossilization – Begins when an organism or its traces become covered by sediments/volcanic ash – After a very long time, pressure and mineralization transform the remains into rock – Fossils are found in stacked layers of sedimentary rock – Younger fossils occur in more recent layers, on top of older fossils in older layers
  • 6. © Cengage Learning 2015 Why Do Biologists Study Rocks and Fossils? (cont’d.) • The fossil record – We have fossils for more that 250,000 species – Fossils are relatively rare, so the fossil record will always be incomplete – Most ancient species had no hard parts to fossilize – Burial site had to escape destructive geologic events

Editor's Notes

  1. Figure 16.6 Examples of fossils A Fossil skeleton of an ichthyosaur that lived about 200 million years ago. These marine reptiles were about the same size as modern porpoises, breathed air like them, and probably swam as fast, but the two groups are not closely related. B Extinct wasp encased in amber, which is ancient tree sap. This 9-mm-long insect lived about 20 million years ago. C Fossilized imprint of a leaf from a 260-millionyear- old Glossopteris, a type of plant called a seed fern. D Fossilized footprint of a theropod, a name that means “beast foot.” This group of carnivorous dinosaurs, which includes the familiar Tyrannosaurus rex, arose about 250 million years ago. E Coprolite (fossilized feces). Fossilized food remains and parasitic worms inside coprolites offer clues about the diet and health of extinct species. A foxlike animal excreted this one.