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Examining in detail at least one amazing fossil site in every state, Albert Dickas clearly explains the critters preserved in the rocks, from sharks and rhinoceroses to trilobites and horn corals. At some sites, you can sift through the shale in search of fossils to keep; at other sites, you can watch professionals excavate museum-quality specimens.
The entertaining introduction discusses the history of paleontology, including nineteenth-century arguments about the age of Earth. Dickas also provides a short history of life on Earth, from microbes in 3-billion-year-old chert to massive mammals of the Pleistocene ice ages. Contained within the last 541 million years are the Cambrian explosion, the age of crinoids, and five mass extinctions, including the one that wiped out the dinosaurs.
This compendium of 101 fossil sites is the companion volume to the hugely popular 101 American Geo-Sites You've Gotta See, published in 2012. Amply illustrated with photographs and written in a clear yet playful prose, 101 American Fossil Sites You've Gotta See will entertain and inform amateur and seasoned fossil buffs, whether from an armchair or in the field.
Born in Ohio, Albert B. Dickas earned bachelor's and master's degrees from Miami University (Oxford, OH). After serving in the US Navy, he earned a PhD at Michigan State University and then worked in the petroleum industry, where knowing your fossils helps identify important stratigraphic layers. He then joined the faculty of the University of WisconsinSuperior, where he taught for thirty-one years and founded an environmental research center. Today he lives in southwest Virginia, where he continues to engage in research and plan travel excursions in his quest for new and interesting geo-sites on all seven continents. He is the author of the companion volume 101 American Geo-Sites You've Gotta See, as well as Ohio Rocks! A Guide to Geologic Sites in the Buckeye State, also published by Mountain Press.