A fossilized carboniferous fern
© Juan Carlos Munoz/Minden Picture
Paleontology meets art. Paleontology meets art
Though it looks like a fresco from Ancient Greece, this is the fossilised remains of a fern found in Córdoba, Spain. The fossil dates back to the Carboniferous period, roughly 350 million years ago. This is a ‘compression fossil’—where a small amount of the original plant material was retained with the mineral deposits that help form the impression. Why all the paleobotany talk? It’s National Fossil Day in the US, a day that was established to promote the value of fossils - and we’re excited! Whether you make a trip to your local natural history museum, trek off to a national park with a fossil exhibit, or just look at fossil photos on the web, we hope you find a fun way to celebrate the day with us.