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Stromatolites: Ancient, Beautiful, and Earth-Altering

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Stromatolites: Ancient, Beautiful, and Earth-Altering

Bob Leis, Bruce L. Stinchcomb, Illustrations by Terry McKee

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A colorful look at 3.5 billion years of stromatolites, peculiar structures produced by primitive life forms that lived over vast spans of geologic time. At once diverse, attractive, and sometimes puzzling, fossilized stromatolites are found worldwide in sedimentary rocks—often presenting striking patterns—where they grew in ancient bodies of water that covered parts of the earth billions of years before the dinosaurs. This reference presents a basic, nontechnical account, along with 636 beautiful images of these most ancient of Earthly collectibles. Stromatolites, and the cyanobacteria that produced most of them, were responsible not only for the fossils themselves, but also, more importantly, for the introduction of free oxygen into the planet’s atmosphere. Covering a diverse variety of stromatolites and the geologic objects that can resemble them, this book is a delight for stromatophiles as well as those curious about the early Earth.

Size: 8 1/2″ x 11″ | 636 color images | Index | 176 pp
ISBN13: 9780764348976 | Binding: soft cover

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Bob Leis has been a stromatolite enthusiast for the last seventeen years. Bob and his wife, Linda, have traveled across the country and overseas to collect and photograph stromatolites. Bob owns a collection from around the world, of over 700 stromatolites and rocks of biogenic origin. Bruce L. Stinchcomb is a retired professor of Geology at St. Louis Community College and an exploration geologist. Dr. Stinchcomb has often worked with geologic mapping and/or mineral exploration in remote areas where stromatolites were a part of the local geologic picture. Terry McKee, an active paleo-artist began his interest in art as a boy, developing his self-taught skills into adulthood. His perceptive studies of nature and college education in zoology and geology have all helped enable Terry to bring fossils to life in his paintings.