9 minute lesson
This is an image from inside the fossilized frill of a triceratops!
It’s beautiful, right? After painstaking hours of slicing the bone to the thickness of a human hair then placing it under a high powered microscope, scientists are able to “read” these images to learn so much more about the animal’s life!
The Museum of the Rockies Paleohistology Lab is one of the few places in the world where research like this is happening. Their collection of over 2,200 slides of fossil specimens gives us the opportunity to study dinosaur physiology and behavior at a microscopic level!
Paleohistology has so many insights to offer!
One of the great questions in paleontology is whether or not fossils that look similar to each other come from entirely different species or are just from the different stages in a species’ development. Studies (like the one from the image at the top of the article) are using paleohistology to help us better understand these kinds of complexities in the fossil record.
A journey through the history of life on Earth. From the dawn of life in the Archaean Eon through the Mesozoic Era — the so-called “Age of Dinosaurs” — right up to the end of the most recent Ice Age. Produced in collaboration with PBS Digital Studios.