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TOPIC 5 - TOPIC 5 What is a Fossil and How Do Fossils Form...

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TOPIC 5 – What is a Fossil and How Do Fossils Form What is a Fossil? Any evidence, direct or indirect, of the existence of organisms in prehistoric time Derivation – the Latin word “fossils,” meaning dug out or dug up TYPES OF FOSSILS Unaltered Soft Part Preservation (Tissue of Insects, Vertebrates, Etc.) By far the most common fossils preserved in peat are plants; however, vertebrate fossils are sometimes found. Animals can be fossilized in amber by getting trapped in the sticky resin before it hardens. On very rare occasions, fossils larger than insects occur in large pieces of amber. Since water is lighter than tar, a layer of water can float on and disguise the tar beneath. Animals seeking a drink can step into the pool and then get trapped in the tar. Mummification or desiccation of fossils results from a drying out of tissues prior to complete decomposition. Frozen fossils have been found in Siberia and Alaska dating from the waning stages of the last ice age. They are found in permanently frozen
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