Presentation on theme: "Fossils. The earliest clues about life on earth are about 3.5 billion years old!!!!"— Presentation transcript:
The earliest clues about life on earth are about 3.5 billion years old!!!!
What are Fossils The remains of organisms that lived a long time ago –Shells –Bones and Teeth –Fossils of Footprints –Leaves and Seeds –Tree Trunks and Branches –Animal Dropings
Where are Fossils Found In layers of sedimentary rock The oldest fossils are found in the bottom layers The youngest fossils are found in the top layers
How are Fossils Formed? An animal dies and is covered by sediment (dirt, sand, etc.) The sediments build up until the body is buried. These layers become rock.
Continued…. Minerals replace the bones and hard parts of the animal. These minerals form the fossil. Sometimes the animal decays, leaving an impression of its body.
Paleontologist a scientist who studies fossils.
How old are fossils? (How can we tell?)
How old are fossils? Relative dating: figure out the age of a fossil found in one layer of rock by comparing it to rock in other layers. Based on the law of superposition – younger layers of rock are deposited on top of older layers
How old are fossils? Radiometric dating: uses the decay of radioactive isotopes to measure the age of rocks Uranium-238 used to date rock millions of years old. Carbon-14 used to date organic substances like bones and tissues that are thousands of years old. Ex: mummies
Which type of dating is more accurate?
GEOLOGIC TIME SCALE
Describes the major geological and biological events in Earths history (Fig 14.5 p. 397)
Divided into eras which are then divided into periods.
Cambrian explosion: rapid branching out of most animal groups
Throughout the time scale there have been many mass extinctions
a large amount of plants and animals die in a short period of time caused by a catastrophe (fire, earthquake, etc.) and/or environmental factors