1. You are in charge of training the first astronauts to go to Mars to look for
fossils. Explain to them where (sedimentary environments, regions) they
should look for fossils – and why they should look there. Explain what
features they should use to distinguish Martian fossils from inorganic
objects – and why. Explain how they could use Martian fossils to correlate
from one exposure to another. And explain how they could use the fossils
to reconstruct the evolutionary history of Martian life.
2. Paleontologists reconstruct the biology of extinct organisms and
characteristics of ancient environments using a variety of approaches. For
example, we talked about basic approaches, or lines of evidence used to
interpret the paleobiology of dinosaurs (and other fossils), and basic
approaches or lines of evidence used in paleoecology. Use examples in
answering these questions. Examples alone are not a good answer.
a. What sort of information does each line of evidence produce?
Qualitative or quantitative?
b. Are some sources of information better than others? Why do you
c. How can these different lines of evidence be used together?