Fossil pollen dating

The pyramids of Egypt are made of sedimentary rocks, for example, that consist of the shells of foraminifera, a major microfossil group.

Microfossils can also be very useful in teaching science at all levels.

Each one must do everything with just a single cell that higher plants or animals do with millions of cells.

Single-celled organisms have many different kinds of specialized organelles within their cells that function in extraordinary ways.

Animals, plants and fungi are multicellular; protists are generally unicellular and include all other eukaryotes.

Prokaryotes and protists are often called "simple", but this is just not true.

Microfossils are a heterogeneous bunch of fossil remains studied as a single discipline because rock samples must be processed in certain ways to remove them and microscopes must be used to study them.Because they usually occur in huge numbers in all kinds of sedimentary rocks, they are the most abundant and most easily accessible fossils.Indeed, some very thick rock layers are made entirely of microfossils.Thus, microfossils, unlike other kinds of fossils, are not grouped according to their relationships to one another, but only because of their generally small size and methods of study.For example, fossils of bacteria, foraminifera, diatoms, very small invertebrate shells or skeletons, pollen, and tiny bones and teeth of large vertebrates, among others, can be called microfossils. Nevertheless, this utilitarian subdivision of paleontology, first recognized in 1883, is very significant in geology, paleontology, and biology.

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Fungi, plants, and animals contribute a vast multitude of small parts to the microfossil record.

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