Airing On Monday
February 27th 2017
8:00 pm eastern, 7:00 pm central and 5:00 pm pacific
On Mondays Natures Talk Show Fine Art of Paleontology, Ken McKeighen and Ken Boorman will be discussing the importance of microfossils.
As their name implies, microfossils are very small remains of organisms that require magnification for study. Collectively, they range in size from less .001 mm (1 micron), which is invisible to the naked eye, to the 1 mm size of a coarse sand grain, although some forms grow up to 20 cm. The latter are still referred to as microfossils because they belong to the same taxonomic group as the minute forms, and they also require microscopic study for identification. Whereas plants, invertebrates, and vertebrates are distinct taxonomic groups, the paleontologic subdiscipline of micropaleontology encompasses a heterogeneous array of minute fossils. They can be plant or animal, unicellular or multicellular, mineralized or organic, shells or skeletons, seeds or spores, teeth or jaws, or enigmatic forms of unknown affinity. Because they are so small, thousands of well-preserved specimens can be retrieved from a small sample of sediment or sedimentary rock.