Forams

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WHAT CAN THEY TELL US ?

Look at the natural beauty in this foram's complex pattern
Orbulina universa - sand-sized central sphere foraminifera surrounded by
delicate spines. (Photo courtesy Dr. Howard Spero of UC Davis)

Several different groups are interested in fossils for different reasons. Petroleum geologists often work with paleontologists, because a paleontologist can determine by the type of forams that are in a rock layer whether there will be oil present. Forams are also used by geochemists. These scientists are able to determine the fossil's age by ratio-isotope studies. This is done by measuring the amount of element, such as carbon, that remains in the fossil. Whether it is students in classroom or a professor in a lab, the small size and abundance of forams make them useful tools for anyone to work with.

For more on Foram's check out our "Helpful Links" section and the "Interactive Quiz" linked in the navbar just to the left.

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