archaeology – the field that studies human cultures by investigating the stuff they left behind artifact – an object made by a human
artifact – an object made by a human
carnivore– animal that eats mainly other animals
extinction – an event in which the last members of a species die
fossil – any trace of a living thing (body part, burrow, footprint) preserved in the rock record glacier – a huge mass of ice formed by compacted snow
herbivore – animal that eats mainly plants
ice age – a time in Earth’s history when temperatures were lower and glaciers and ice sheets expanded
pollen – sex cells in plants that usually take the form of tiny grains of material
sediment – material like sand or soil that is moved and deposited by water or wind
species – a group of living things that interbreed with one another
- What question were the paleontologists Maria and Miguel trying to answer? Be as specific as possible.
- Describe one potential hypothesis about the cause of the large animal extinction that was not supported by evidence. What evidence contradicted this hypothesis?
- In this story, fossils are used to learn much more than just which species lived in Ultima Esperanza. List at least three things that the researchers learned from fossils other than what species they belonged to.
- Describe at least three different lines of evidence that researchers used to figure out what the landscape ofUltima Esperanza was like at different points in time and what each line of evidence revealed.
- Compare and contrast the explanations for the disappearance of carnivores and the disappearance of herbivores from Ultima Esperanza.