Invertebrate Paleontology

collection of mollusk shells

Mollusk graveyards are time machines to oceans’ pristine past

A Florida Museum of Natural History study shows that mollusk fossils provide a reliable measure of human-driven changes in marine ecosystems and shifts in ocean biodiversity. Collecting data from the shells of dead mollusks is a low-impact way of ...
Klompmaker examines fossils of ancient crustaceans

Crustaceans vulnerable as coral reefs decline

Postdoctoral researcher Adiel Klompmaker is lead author of a new study suggesting a direct correlation between the abundance of coral reefs and the diversity of many crustaceans. Florida Museum of Natural History photo by Jeff Gage Nearly 150 mil...
sea star fossil

Ancient sea stars pose challenge for paleontologists

This 40- to 35-million year old fossil of Oyenaster oblidus shows the ossicles forming the ancient sea star's skeleton. Intact specimens such as this one are rare. © Photo courtesy of the Florida Museum's invertebrate paleontology collection. Ima...
Roger Portell at Gitmo

Guantanamo Bay fossils fill research void

Roger Portell, invertebrate paleontologist at the Florida Museum of Natural History, walks underneath a late Pleistocene coral terrace at Guantanamo Bay Naval ...