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Re: Fieldwork or bust? (Was: Stenopelix valdensis)



Phil Bigelow wrote:

>All true.
>I do think, however, that occasionally participating in a paleo dig
>is
>beneficial to everyone involved in the earth and biological sciences.
> As
>a geologist, I have had many paleontology Eureka! moments, and I can
>assure everyone that none of those moments occurred in a museum
>setting.
>(I'm not denigrating museums, but field discoveries tend to energize
>me
>more).
>

    This, I think, may be as much a matter of personal inclination as
anything else. I would say I've had a great many more "eureka
moments" in museums or with collections than elsewhere, as a
collection gives you more time to sit and contemplate the
specimen(s). Of course, many of these have been in connection with
what might be called 'collection mining' - going into pre-existing
collections and looking for interesting stuff. A heck of a lot of
material in museums is collected (by someone not working on exactly
that creature), deposited and never looked at again until someone
comes along who _is_ working on the group it belongs to.
    Not that I haven't had plenty moments in the field as well - to
summarise, it's all good.

    Cheers,

        Christopher Taylor