FossilsScience brain teasers require understanding of the physical or biological world and the laws that govern it.
Two scientists, Fred and Liz, were working at a dig site to find fossils. They both had just gotten their degrees in Geology and were very excited to start work.
Fred had suspected that Liz wasn't who she said she was, mostly because she messed up terms and almost seemed to lack some basic skills in excavation and classification of fossils. One day Liz was looking at a well-preserved fossil when Fred walked in. He decided to test her and asked, "What kind of rock is that preserved in?" She answered back, "Igneous of course!" He then knew that she didn't have a degree in Geology and told the boss who, of course, fired her. What answer should she have given?
HintThink about the three rock typs: Igneous, Metamorphic, and Sedimentary.
Also think about how well preserved the fossil is.
AnswerThe correct answer should have been Sedimentary. During the process of a bone becoming a fossil it is very fragile. During the Igneous rock process the rock must be melted to create a different rock, therefore melting the fossil. Metamorphic may have been a correct answer, but the fossil was well preserved. Very uncommon is a fossil found in metamorphic rock, and if it is it is found in terrible condition because the metamorphic process used heat and pressure which would also destroy the fossil. The only way a fossil can survive in metamorphic rock is if the rock was only just slightly changed, and the fossil would be in terrible condition.
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