This unique addition to reference literature provides an introduction to the major concepts and contemporary issues that are essential for students of environmental science and environmental studies to know. With over 200 entries authored by world-class names like Anthony Brazel, John Day and Edward Keller, this text is divided into six sections: Environmental Science, Environments, Paradigms & Concepts, Processes & Dynamics, Scales & Techniques, and Environmental Issues.  

Fossils and Palaeontology

Fossils and palaeontology

Fossil’ in the AGI Glossary in 1987 is defined as ‘Any remains, trace, or imprint of a plant or animal that has been preserved in the Earth's crust since some past geologic or prehistoric time; loosely, any evidence of past life’.

Once regarded as ‘sports of the Devil placed in rocks to confuse man’, fossils were scientific mystery until Leonardo da Vinci correctly maintained that they are impressions or remains of once-living organisms preserved in stone. Fossils are more than just bones and shells; they include plants, even pollen, excrement, eggs, and cast-off shells of living animals. In many instances, an organism's teeth may be all that comprises parts hard enough to fossilize. Several processes are required to fossilize organic remains: reduction ...

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