Anthro midterm 2 textbook notes

Anthro midterm 2 textbook notes - Anthropology Chapter 9...

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Anthropology Chapter 9 Fossil: the preserved remnants of once-living things, often buried in the ground. Paleontology: the study of extinct organisms, based on their fossilized remains. Can find out… how ancient the fossil what kind of organism it represents ecological adaptations of the organism ex. Diet and locomotion **context is important because it could assess how old it is, what kind of environment it lived in and what other animals it might have lived and competed with. Taphonomy: the study of what happens to the remains of an animal from the time of death to the time of discovery - include both biological and geological processes. To become a fossil, part of the organism must e preserved by burial, a natural process in which the carcass or part of it is covered with sediment. Burial interrupts the biological phase of decomposition, protecting the skeleton from further ravaging and trampling by biological organisms. Once buried, skeletal remains get preserved by absorbing minerals from the surrounding soil or ground water that eventually replace the organism’s original inorganic tissues. The result is petrification, the process of being turned in to stone. While inorganic may become a fossil, organic component of skeleton is lost forever unless they are preserved in ice. Traces of fossils can be used such as tracks left by animals or coprolites - fossilized feces. Stratigraphy Def- the study of the order of rock layers and the sequence of events they reflect Stra- layers Uniformitarianism (james hutton) – processes operating today are also those that operated in the past and thus they can explain the fossil and geological record. Critical to an understanding the context of fossil 1. original horizontality (streno) -layers of rock are laid parallel to the earth’s gravitational field and thus horizontal to the earth’s surface. All deformities are affected later activity. 2. superposition- principle of superposition (streno) -older layers are laid down first and then covered by younger layers. Thus older sediments are on the bottom. 3. cross-cutting relationship -geological feature must exist before another feature can cut across or through it. Thing that is cut is older than the thing cutting through it. 4. faunal succession (William Smith)
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-deeper fauna is older but also that there are predictable sequences of fauna through strata, that successive layers contain certain types of faunal communities and type of fossils that follow one another in predictable patterns through streta. The Geological Time Scale -def: the categories of time into which Earth’s history are usually divided by geologists and paleontologists: eons, eras, periods, epachs. Zoic at the end
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This note was uploaded on 09/03/2009 for the course ANTH 200 taught by Professor Stanford during the Fall '08 term at USC.

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Anthro midterm 2 textbook notes - Anthropology Chapter 9...

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