Associate Professor - Sedimentology, Stratigraphy, Paleobiology
Phone: (518) 580-5196
Office Location: Dana 176
Dacryoconarids are an extinct, enigmatic group of marine zooplankters that are the most abundant and among the most diverse organisms of the Devonian Period (408-362 ma.) of Earth history. My current research centers on the systematics of Middle Devonian dacs for the purpose of seeking patterns in the way(s) in which the marine biosphere responds to geologically abrupt, global-scale environmental perturbations such as climate change, oxygen depletion, or the immigration of exotic species.WHY DOES IT INTEREST YOU?
On the one hand, the dacs have of eastern North America have been pretty much ignored by paleobiologists since the late 1800s while the Europeans have named and described dozens of genera and scores of species since that time. It is a great adventure to discover new species and to compare the American faunas with those of Europe and North Africa. On the other hand, because the dacs are a terminally extinct group with no living relatives even at the phylum level, it is also a great adventure to try and sleuth out what kind of animal they were and to study their paleoecology. On yet another hand, assuming one is allowed, my primary objective is to study the nature of change itself, specifically the tempos and causes of species’ evolution and extinction on regional and global scales.
CREATIVE THOUGHT MATTERS
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