Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun The study of the events and processes, such as burial in sediment, transportation, and decomposition, that affect the remains of an organism after it dies.
  • noun These events and processes, especially those leading up to preservation or fossilization.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun The study of the fate of the remains of organisms after they die, especially the study of fossilization.

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Greek taphē, grave + –nomy.]

Examples

  • Martin Brazeau has an excellent post on taphonomy at The Lancelet reporting a paper in which folks let poor innocent critters rot in order to ascertain which anatomical features are likely to be preserved and which are likely to be lost before fossilization, and the implications for interpreting fossils of ‘soft’ tissues for phylogenetics.

    The Panda's Thumb: February 2010 Archives

  • Rotting fish and taphonomy: what fossilizes? is the next entry in this blog.

    Evidence that the Second Law of Thermodynamics is wrong? - The Panda's Thumb

  • Martin Brazeau has an excellent post on taphonomy at The Lancelet reporting a paper in which folks let poor innocent critters rot in order to ascertain which anatomical features are likely to be preserved and which are likely to be lost before fossilization, and the implications for interpreting fossils of ‘soft’ tissues for phylogenetics.

    Rotting fish and taphonomy: what fossilizes? - The Panda's Thumb

  • Martin Brazeau has an excellent post on taphonomy at The Lancelet reporting a paper in which folks let poor innocent critters rot in order to ascertain which anatomical features are likely to be preserved and which are likely to be lost before fossilization, and the implications for interpreting fossils of ‘soft’ tissues for phylogenetics.

    The Panda's Thumb: Transitional Fossils Archives

  • Martin Brazeau has an excellent post on taphonomy at The Lancelet reporting a paper in which folks let poor innocent critters rot in order to ascertain which anatomical features are likely to be preserved and which are likely to be lost before fossilization, and the implications for interpreting fossils of ‘soft’ tissues for phylogenetics.

    The Panda's Thumb: Research News Archives

  • Rotting fish and taphonomy: what fossilizes? was the previous entry in this blog.

    Sarracenia purpurea - The Panda's Thumb

  • There were several good talks in the morning on everything from plesiosaurs, to Deinosuchus in the Kaiparowits and Wahweap formations (in press), to taphonomy of dinosaur bonbeds in the Kaiparowits Formation (one of my favorite talks).

    Two great meetings

  • There were several good talks in the morning on everything from plesiosaurs, to Deinosuchus in the Kaiparowits and Wahweap formations (in press), to taphonomy of dinosaur bonbeds in the Kaiparowits Formation (one of my favorite talks).

    Archive 2009-05-01

  • The shell bed taphonomy is associated with a ceratopsian quarry from the Kaiparowits Formation in southern Utah.

    Neoceratopsian publications for 2008

  • The shell bed taphonomy is associated with a ceratopsian quarry from the Kaiparowits Formation in southern Utah.

    Archive 2009-01-01

Comments

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  • “The sciences of taphonomy — how bodies decompose and eventually become stone — and paleontology have allowed us to piece together many details of ancient ecosystems.�?

    The New York Times, Reflections on an Oyster, by Olivia Judson, December 30, 2008

    January 1, 2009

  • Yes. Everything that happens between death and fossilization.

    January 1, 2009