Textbook Notes (362,734)
Canada (158,032)
Biology (653)
BIO153H5 (147)
Chapter 27

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University of Toronto Mississauga
Christoph Richter

Starting From Page 526 Only the fossil record provides direct evidence about what organisms that lived in the past looked like where they lived and when they existed Most of the processes that form fossils begin when part or all of an organism is buried in ash sand mud or some other type of sedimentOnce burial occursIf decomposition does not occur the organic remains can be preserved intactlike the fossil pollenIf sediments accumulate on top of the material and become cemented into rocks such as mudstone or shale the sediments weight can compress the organic material below into a thin carbaneous filmIf the remains decompose after they are buriedthe hole that remains can fill with dissolved minerals and faithfully create a cast of the remainsIf the remains rot extremely slowly dissolved minerals can gradually infiltrate the interior of the cells and harden into stone forming a permineralized fossil such as petrified woodIn most habitatsdecomposition is rapid and burial is slow In Reality then fossilization is an extremely rare eventLimitations of Fossil RecordHabitat bias Organisms that live in areas where sediments are actively being depositedincluding beaches mudflats and swampsare much more likely t
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