Fossil feces from an Indiana sinkhole preserve traces of a meat-eater’s meal
Close up of one of the Pipe Creek Sinkhole coprolites showing structures interpreted as hair (A) and a close-up of a mold in the coprolite thought to have been made by a hair (B). From Farlow et al, 2010.
Time and again I have stressed that every fossil bone tells a story, and, in a different way, so do coprolites. They are small snapshots of a moment in the life of an organism, often preserving bits of their meals, and while they may not get top billing in museum halls, they are among the most pungent reminders that weird and wonderful organisms really did live during the remote past. As reported by paleontologists James Farlow,