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Q1C3L3 Fossils.ppt
Paleontology—The Study of Past Life
• The history of the Earth would be incomplete
without knowledge of the organisms that have
inhabited our planet and the conditions under
which they lived.
• The science involved with the study of past life
is called paleontology.
• Paleontologists study fossils, which are the
remains of organisms preserved by geologic
processes.
Fossil
 Preserved remains of a past organism
FORMATION OF FOSSILS
 Fossilized- the process of becoming a fossil.
 Fossils are evidence of past life, preserved in
rock.
 Most fossils form when living things die and
are buried by sediments.
 The sediments slowly harden into rock and
preserve the shapes of the organisms.
The Fossil Record and life
 The fossil record is the complete body of
fossils that shows how species and ecosystems
change over time.
What do fossils tell us?
 Fossils provide evidence of how
life has changed over time.
 Fossils help scientists infer how
Earth’s surface has changed.
 Fossils are clues to what past
environments were like.
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Q1C3L3 Fossils.ppt

  • 2. Paleontology—The Study of Past Life • The history of the Earth would be incomplete without knowledge of the organisms that have inhabited our planet and the conditions under which they lived. • The science involved with the study of past life is called paleontology. • Paleontologists study fossils, which are the remains of organisms preserved by geologic processes.
  • 3. Fossil  Preserved remains of a past organism
  • 4. FORMATION OF FOSSILS  Fossilized- the process of becoming a fossil.  Fossils are evidence of past life, preserved in rock.  Most fossils form when living things die and are buried by sediments.  The sediments slowly harden into rock and preserve the shapes of the organisms.
  • 5. The Fossil Record and life  The fossil record is the complete body of fossils that shows how species and ecosystems change over time.
  • 6. What do fossils tell us?  Fossils provide evidence of how life has changed over time.  Fossils help scientists infer how Earth’s surface has changed.  Fossils are clues to what past environments were like.
  • 8. Types of fossils  Petrified fossils  Molds and casts  Carbon films  Trace fossils  Index fossils  Preserved remains
  • 9. Petrified Fossils  Fossils in which minerals replace all or part of an organism.  How does this happen?  Water rich in dissolved minerals seeped into spaces, then evaporated, leaving the hardened minerals behind.  Example – petrified wood
  • 10. Molds and casts  Most common type of fossil.  Both copy the shape of the organism.  A mold is a hollow area of sediment in the shape of the organism.  A cast is a copy of the shape of an organism. Cast fossil Mold fossil Consider this: Mold and cast fossils can be compared to a cake pan. The pan is the mold, and the cake is the cast.
  • 11. Carbonization-Carbon Films  Leaves extremely thin coating of carbon film outline on rock.  How does this happen? All organisms are made of carbon. When they are buried, the materials that make up the organism evaporates. These gases escape leaving carbon behind.
  • 12.  Trace fossils are a fossilized mark that is formed in soft sediment by the movement or actions of an animal.  Examples  A footprint provides clues about the size and behavior, the speed, how many legs it walked on, lived alone or with others.  A trail or burrow can give clues about the size and shape of the organism, where it lived, and how it obtained food. Trace Fossils
  • 13. Index Fossils  An index fossil is a fossil found in a narrow time range but widely distributed around the earth; used to date rock layers.  Example  Trilobite: a marine organism that has become a fossil.  Ammonite
  • 16. Preserved remains  Preservation of remains with little or no change. Bog Mummies
  • 17. Preserved remains  Tar  The sticky oil that seeps from Earth’s surface. Tar soaks into the organisms bones, preserving the bones from decay.
  • 18. Preserved remains  Amber  The hardened resin, or sap, of trees. The amber seals the organism from the air protecting it from decay.
  • 19. Preserved remains Ice  Ice Fossils are actual flesh remains of the organism. They become trapped in ice and remain frozen until they thaw. A good example of an ice fossil is a Woolly Mammoth, which are often found in the Arctic.
  • 20. NOW- Answer the following questions in the margins below the notes. Observe the fossil at the left. A. What does it look like? B. what type of fossil is it? These fossils are believed to be found in the Sahara Desert; C. What might you infer about how they got there? Begin working on your Fossil stations.