#42: Deep, deep time (with Björn Kröger)

Two hundred years ago, the very first illustration of prehistoric times –in a scientific context– was brought to light. It was painted by British geologist and palaeontologist Henry De la Beche, who was inspired by fossils collected by Mary Anning. The artwork, known as “Duria Antiquior, a more ancient Dorset”, cuts through coastal waters to depict the epic – and strangely simultaneous– battles between different marine species.

But, hey, wait a minute! Did these species ever meet? Why are they so violent? How come there are no depictions of cyanobacteria “dominating” the planet 3 billion years ago? Maybe this representation tells us more about humans than about prehistoric animals.

Welcome to a brand new episode of Ferment Radio full of stories to be retold, deep time, cyanobacteria, and the inevitable fate that awaits all species: extinction. We are guided by Björn Kröger’s expertise in marine paleoecology, paleobiology, and his interest in the history and philosophy of Earth sciences. Björn is also the Curator of the Paleontological Collections at the Finnish Museum of Natural History in Helsinki, and a docent at the University of Helsinki, Finland.

Let’s take a trip in time!