Questions tagged [paleontology]

Paleontology (also Palaeontology) is the scientific study of past life. Questions about the biological aspect of paleontology (such as taxonomy and anatomy) are off-topic here and should be asked on biology.stackexchange.com

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Fossil ID: possible fauna fossil, from Perlis, Malaysia

I found this fossil while doing my fieldwork in limestone area. Description below may help to identify it. Location: NW Perlis, Malaysia (Setul Formation). Hilly Area. My Observation: Have a curly ...
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Why did notosuchians and similar crocodylomorphs thrive in the Jurassic-Cretaceous but fail to compete with adequate mammalian competitors?

Notosuchia has a long and storied past. They seem to have gotten by just fine with dinosaurs dominating the makeup of mid and late Mesozoic megafauna. Despite dinosaurs having more developed and ...
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Is the Talus (or Astralagus) the most frequently recorded fossil mammal bone?

I was once told by a paleontologist that the talus (or astralagus) bone is one of the most frequently observed fossils among mammals. Can anyone verify if this might be true? Because of the density ...
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Is Radiocarbon dating flawed?

I posted this before on physics stack exchange, but it was deemed off topic, which is understandable, so I hope it won't be here. Recently, I stumbled upon an article by an individual named A.M. ...
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What is taphonomic expansion?

Fossils are bacteria colonies sometimes, a bone can expand with fluid. This is pretty common sense and I understand it. But what is taphonomic expansion? Does it mean a fossil can be bigger than the ...
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"Great Dying" reduction in biomass

In "The Great Dying" About 250 million years ago, at the end of the Permian period, something killed some 90 percent of the planet's species. Less than 5 percent of the animal species in the seas ...
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Did low $\small\sf{CO_2}$ levels affected Permo-Triassic mass extinction?

After answering this question: How did plants adapt to $\small\sf{CO_2}$ levels past 400k years? Why won't they do it again? I know Permo-Triassic mass extinction is associated to a catastrophic ...
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229 views

Why are Lomekwian tools considered different from Oldowan tools?

I just read this short article from Scientific American: Archaeologists Take Wrong Turn, Find World's Oldest Stone Tools about Sonia Harmand's discoveries. The last sentence is: Harmand says the ...
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How to be involved in paleontolgy as a non-earth scientist

I want to be involved in paleontology or archaeology but I don't intend to go back to school for either. I am aware of some opprotunities to volunteer on field studies but am hoping for more resources....
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Why can (certain) uranium dating methods only provide a MINIMUM age of a sample?

Has everyone heard the stories about two new sets of archaic human remains found? One set of remains in Israel (Nester Tampa 'Homo') and one set in China (Homo longi -Dragon Man)? Multiple press ...
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Book recommendation on Homo erectus?

I've just read Rebecca Wragg Sykes' Kindred on Neanderthals, a very thorough and fresh look at that species and I'd love to read something similar on Homo erectus. Is there such a book?