• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Identify and discuss the difficulties experienced in classifying extinct organisms and explain how classification of organisms can assist in developing a deeper understanding of past and present life in Australia.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Identify and discuss the difficulties experienced in classifying extinct organisms and explain how classification of organisms can assist in developing a deeper understanding of past and present life in Australia. There are many difficulties that are faced when classifying extinct organisms. Developments in the knowledge of past and present organisms have allowed a thorough understanding of the origins of life and the evolution of many living things1, the discovery of fossils and classification of these findings allows this knowledge to develop further. Difficulties can be faced when recovering the fossils to classifying the species. There are difficulties prior to finding the fossils and after classification has occurred. Fossil remains of any organism can be difficult to identify. The fossil remains may be incomplete or not show sufficient detail for classification. When an incomplete fossil remain is found, it is difficult to determine which organism the fossil belongs to. ...read more.

Middle

Organisms that have no obvious living relatives can be classified. With microscopic technology, palaeontologists can look at the microscopic structure and chemical composition of the remains to determine if there is a living relative3. Without this technology the remains may never be classified. Also, radiographic technology has allowed researches to assist in the study of fossils. 'In recent years the availability of high-resolution CT scanning has allowed researches to probe fossils encased in rock matrix, study internal anatomy otherwise not visible, and has been used to discredit fraudulent fossils'4 This technology was used in 1999, where a fossil named Archaeoraptor had claimed to demonstrate that birds and dinosaurs were closely related, this was proved otherwise with CT technology. By using DNA, two related organisms can be checked to see if they evolve from a common ancestor. This can assist with classifying organisms which do not appear to be related to other organisms. ...read more.

Conclusion

Each organism is given a name, usually in Latin, which is internationally accepted and used. This results in a lack of communication about certain organisms. Classification also allows a greater understanding of evolution. A classifying system which is used for this reason is called phylogenetic8. It can show the relationships between organisms where similarities and differences can be compared. Difficulties that are faced when classifying extinct organisms can be overcome with technology. However technology does not cover all aspects that are needed when classifying organisms and can have negative effects. 1 Life on Earth Syllabus 2 Archer M, Fossil Hunters - The job of Paleontologists, Bookshelf Publishing Australia, 1992 3 Microsoft(r) Encarta(r) Encyclopedia 2002. (c) 1993-2001 Microsoft Corporation. 4 Use of radiographic technology in the study of vertebrae fossils, Ligget G, Sternberg Museum of Natural History, Kansas. 5 Mudie K and Brotherson J, Biology, Heinemann, Australia 2000 6 Alford D and Hill J, Preliminary Biology, Pascal Press, Australia 2001 7 Alford D and Hill J, Preliminary Biology, Pascal Press, Australia 2001excel 8 Mudie K and Brotherson J, Biology, Heinemann, Australia 2000 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Energy, Respiration & the Environment section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Energy, Respiration & the Environment essays

  1. Weed study. Dandelions - descrption and characteristics. Investigation to dandelion distribution.

    "Plants adapt themselves to obtain sunlight, two ways of doing so are leaves having a large surface area, and the leaves are thin"... Toole and Toole, Understanding Biology Knowing the appearance of the dandelion, I feel that the above quotation fits in with the dandelion.

  2. A Comparative Study of the Density of Patella Vulgata (Common Limpets) in the Optimum ...

    which get more sunlight and it is an inhospitable place for inter tidal organisms as they are susceptible to desiccation. The rocky shores can be divided into four different zones: splash zone, upper shore, middle shore and lower shore. At the top (splash zone)

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work