Thursday, June 25, 2015

The First Day in Dr.Hull lab.

When I first walked in Dr.Hull lab , it did looked the way I was expecting to look like. Easy to get around , everything well organized Like any other lab.  But the cool part was that  this time I would be doing real work! that really got me excited. My first time ever working in a lab. As I was getting intructions how to wash forams , I wanted to start right away. While I was washing  couple examples , it came to my mind that Im really doing very  important work. Its  amazing Im washing forams from the K-T boundry which happend about  66 million years ago!! this samples cost thousands of dollars , so its really important to take it very serious. The labs is filled with very dedicated , motivated, intelligent and friendly people. thats what make it a really awsome lab to be in.  Really looking forward to have a interesting summer.  also to learn more about this amazing forams.

A Day of Discovery

Yesterday, I discovered a lot more about invertebrate paleontology and the amount of effort and time that our scientists dedicate into the research that goes into the different fossils present in our collections. I spent time with Dr. Susan Butts going through the process of evolution of ammonites and nautilus. It was interesting looking at the intricate development these creatures went through, by creating complex chambers within itself. Understanding the science behind the functions of these creatures was awesome because the change of buoyancy within these chambers would allow the invertebrate to change their altitudes. There was a certain fossil that we saw which were called the blobs. We weren't sure what they seemed to be because their shapes were so distinct... like blobs. We initially thought they may be molds or imprints of jellies. However, the shape of it was what caught us off guard. Nonetheless, my curiosity only grew.

Later in the day, we tried to identify fossils of our own. The one I took was tiny in my hand. it was very symmetrical, and had a plethora of spines extruding from its center to the outer edge of it. I named him "Georgie." I started researching what it may be. I thought it may be a sea urchin or a type of coral. So I searched information about different Echinoderms. I found pictures that looked like Georgie. He was a coral, more specifically, a "Cnidarian". This type of coral grew independently unlike the common corals we find. What was special about Georgie was that he was a carnivore that captures it's prey with its tentacles. The fossil I had was about 1 1/2 cm wide, but they can grow up to 50 cm! It was really cool discovering Georgie and classifying him.

-Gayatri Sivalenka

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

First Day In The Lab

If I had any worries before starting this internship, they evaporated when I saw everyones welcoming faces in the lab.

Today we were introduced to the basic content behind the microfossil paleontology lab. We have so much more to learn but I am glad that we got an early start so that we have more time to correct our awkward hand positions and gain some confidence while rinsing through ten thousand dollar mud samples.

First Day at the Lab

This first day in Dr. Hull's lab was honestly so different form what I expected.

For one I thought I was going to sit there at a table with a large slab of mud, and a sponge. But who knew that mud sampling was more than just that?

The different things that go on in Dr. Hull's lab are exciting to see. This lab specializes in micro-fossils- mostly foraminifera.

Now, onto the lab work itself...

Let's start with saying that it wasn't as scary as I thought it would be. When I was told that I was holding mud from billions of years ago-before whales were actually whales- when birds weren't that cute- I was terrified. I wondered why I was there, and why the Peabody would trust a short, 16 year old girl with history.

Much to my knowledge it wasn't as intense as my imagination made it seem. The lab work was straight forward but interesting at the same time. I enjoyed looking at all of the foraminifera and loved hearing the story or history that Dr. Hull would tell us about them. It was really great and I enjoyed my time tremendously.

I'm excited to be coming in on Thursday and hope to learn many many more new things.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

3D printers are Amazing

Today we met with Dr.Thomas and we told her about our time slices , how  time amazed us, and how animals that you would never believe live in a hot area , million years ago they lived in hot place.
Dr. Thomas also showed us this amazing fossil that She made with a 3D printer. DR.thomas told us that we can use this stragedy to put the 3D printer version instead of the REAL fossil. which is more acceptable for little kids to hold and feel what a fossil is without dropping it.You can basically create anything with a 3D printer , you just got to know how place the object.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Last Tour

In the last meeting we had our last tour , I was really happy he let us look around , touch , take out the collection. It was my first time that I went to the collection, so I spend most of my time looking at this amazing fossils ive never seen before. , Also I learned how to tell the difference of an animal that eats meat of an animal that eats plants , grass, just by looking at their teeth!!  its amazing how animals got use to eat grass and do no harm to them, meanwhile it would kill a human to eat large amounts of grass because grass has tiny glass which can cut you badly. I was really shocked by this tour.