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Casts & Molds



Coprolites & Gastroliths

Drying & Desiccation



Molecular fossils



Trace fossils

Wax & Asphalt

Fossils: Window to the past


What is freezing?

This type of fossilization preserves an organism wholly without any significant alteration to its chemical composition. The parts of the organism that are usually preserved are muscles, tendons, and skin. In a typical fossilization, the hard parts of the organism are preserved when the organism's soft parts are replaced by other stable organic materials or mineral substances from the environment. This type of fossilization encompasses the organism in an inert environment to prevent any or little changes within the organism. Freezing is one of the ways to slow down the decomposition of soft parts.

What are the conditions for freezing?

So how did organisms remain in these circumstances for millions of years? Assuming that the organism is an animal, it most likely fell into a melted-out ice crevice. This animal was then entombed in a fatal and freezing predicament. A common example of this type fossilization could be a woolly mammoth frozen in a permafrost region of Siberia and Alaska. These animals probably died during the late Ice Age. Paleontologists rarely come across mastodons, woolly rhinoceros, horses, moose, bison, musk oxen, and other animals.

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