Most people don’t know that Ohio has a State Fossil. Ohio’s state fossil is the Trilobite. A trilobite is a fish that lived 526 million years ago. The trilobite is about 70 cm long or about two feet long! They were actually one of the first lifeforms to have complex eyes! Collecting trilobites has even been happening for a long time, trilobites have been found in human burial grounds from 50,000 years ago! Even though the Trilobite is the state fossil, finding a trilobite can be quite difficult in Ohio.
If you’ve been wondering this whole time, what is a fossil? Well a fossil is, “the remains or impression of a prehistoric organism preserved in petrified form or as a mold or cast in rock.” So who studies fossils and what is the study of fossils? Paleontology is the study of fossils and a Paleontologist study fossils. There are millions of fossils just waiting to be discovered by paleontologists. Without fossils we wouldn’t know anything about the history of the Earth or the plants and animals that roamed on the Earth millions of years ago.
Did you know that Ohio use to be in a more tropical/warmer climate zone millions of years ago? Trilobites and other fossils helped discover that. Fossils around the Ohio region, like the Trilobite were fossilized in a ocean like rock that helped show that Ohio (or where the fossil was found) was in a tropical and sea area. Many other fossils that were found around the Ohio region like corals, crinoids, algae also proved that Ohio use to be covered with water.
Like the trilobite, fossils are the reason we know so much about the Earth millions of years ago. That’s why fossils are such an crucial part of the Earth. I encourage you to try and research some of the fossils in the region you live in! Maybe even go hunting for fossils! Comment below if you have any questions or facts to tell me!