Paleonet: most iconic / most important fossils

Thomas R. Holtz, Jr. tholtz at
Wed Nov 14 17:44:59 GMT 2012

I would say that the Great Animal of Maastricht (Mosasaurus hoffmani) as the first clues for a vanished Age of Reptiles, and the
type specimen of Homo neanderthalensis for the existence of fossil non-sapiens humans.

More parochially, and more recently in terms of scientific contributions, the discovery of Sinosauropteryx prima was the first
fossil to demonstrate the presence of feathers/feather homologues in dinosaurs well basal to Archaeopteryx, and kicked off the
current era of dinosaurian studies.

Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
Email: tholtz at	Phone: 301-405-4084
Office: Centreville 1216			
Senior Lecturer, Vertebrate Paleontology
Dept. of Geology, University of Maryland
Fax: 301-314-9661		

Faculty Director, Science & Global Change Program, College Park Scholars
Fax: 301-314-9843

Mailing Address:	Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
			Department of Geology
			Building 237, Room 1117
			University of Maryland
			College Park, MD 20742 USA

> -----Original Message-----
> From: paleonet-bounces at [mailto:paleonet-bounces at] On Behalf Of bjoern kroeger
> Sent: Wednesday, November 14, 2012 10:11 AM
> To: PaleoNet
> Subject: Paleonet: most iconic / most important fossils
> Hello PaleoNet,
> I am preparing a paleontological museum educational project on the history of live (very general) and for that purpose would like
> know, which fossils  could be considered by you as the most important / most iconic for our past & current understanding of
> and the history of life.
> I think of the Archeopteryx as an icon for a "missing link", the "Ohio animal" as an icon for extinction.
> I also have fossils in mind, that are iconic for specific events, such as Anomalocaris for the Cambrian explosion.
> I don't have necessarily individual fossils in mind, but also suite's like Trueman's Gryphaea and Brinkmann's Kosmoceras for
> Willimsons Turkana molluscs for punctualism (but see Van Bocxlaer et al. 2007) etc.
> Suggestions are welcome! (Probably there is already a compilation published somewhere?)
> Thank you,
> Björn Kröger
> ----------------------
>  ~ ~ ~   >0<>
> Dr. Björn Kröger
> Museum für Naturkunde
> Invalidenstr. 43
> D-10115 Berlin
> Germany
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