Welcome Back TBFC!
TBFC got off to a great start at the September meeting. We had over a hundred folks show up to learn a little bit about meteorites from Dr. Greg Shanos. Dr. Greg kept a big crowd at his table after the presentation to show off the collection of space debris he brought along. I was a little worried the crowd might find the discussion too far off topic from paleontology, but everyone really seemed to enjoy the talk and the meteorites that were displayed. Check September off from your list, and let’s move on to October!
October 6th Meeting
Dr. Michal Kowalewski, Florida Museum of Natural History
Evolutionary History of Prey: 600 million Years of Predator-Prey
Interactions in Earth’s Oceans
Predation is not only one of the key ecological process shaping modern ecosystems, but may have also played an important role throughout the evolutionary history of animals. However, assessing biotic interactions in the fossil record is challenging. Fortuitously, in the marine fossil record, direct records of predatory attacks are provided by trace fossils (e.g., repair scars, bite marks, drill holes) left by predators on skeletons of their prey. Using a compilation of trace fossil data, Dr. Kowalewski assesses long-term changes in the intensity and nature of predator-prey interactions in marine ecosystems. Despite numerous interpretative challenges, trace fossils indicate that intensity of predation and predator-prey body size relationships may have changed in a non-monotonic fashion throughout the evolutionary history of aquatic animals. These changes parallel long-term shifts in global biodiversity, faunal composition, and morphology of marine animals pointing to causative links between predation and macroevolutionary changes in Earth’s oceans.
Join TBFC for another great lecture and paleo evening. Don’t forget, meetings are starting at 7PM.
National Fossil Day
TBFC has again partnered with the National Parks Service and the Florida Aquarium to bring National Fossil Day to the Tampa Bay area. The Florida Aquarium has been gracious enough to host TBFC for Fossil Day since this special day began back in 2010. It seems like each year the Aquarium’s events for Fossil Day get bigger and bigger.
In 2010 we started with a simple display table of TBFC’s fossils and replicas. Over the years the event has grown to include many displays throughout the Aquarium where we display fossils related to some of the living creatures on exhibit. Lucky for us the Guest Service Facilitator is actually a paleontologist by degree and has worked with many of the scientists we have met at TBFC meetings over the years.
If you haven’t visited the Florida Aquarium yet, this is the perfect time to come check it out and celebrate Fossil Day with TBFC.
Marvin Preston Club Service Award
Be sure to congratulate Bill Faucher as the most recent recipient of the Marvin Preston Club Service award. Bill’s been around as the VP of TBFC for at least a decade. He’s often found at TBFC events and outreach and puts in as much time as anybody leading up to FossilFest, and, he’s now taking on the Treasurer duties. Oh, and he lugs around the sound system to all of the club’s events. Thanks Bill!
I look forward to seeing everyone at the meeting!