Questions for a Paleontologist
Interested in Fossils or Paleontology? Do you want to know what a paleontologist does? Browse these "Questions for a Paleontologist" and learn what they do!
Interview with Stephen J. Godfrey
Stephen J. Godfrey excavating a Eurhinodelphis dolphin out of the Calvert Cliffs
Name: Stephen J. Godfrey
Area of Focus: Fossil dolphins and other cool fossils like coprolites
Institution: Calvert Marine Museum
1. How did you become interested in Paleontology?
My first love was natural history museums (I was fascinated by skeletons and other cool objects in nature like sea shells and pine cones). So as a teen, I transformed my bedroom into a little museum. However, I also wanted to find out if the fossil record was reliable; was it an accurate reflection of the history of life on earth...so far so good!
2. Explain the aspect of Paleontology that you focus on.
I love doing research and publishing on some of the amazing fossils that paleontologists (both amateur and professional) find and bring to the museum.
3. What do you do in the course of a day as a Paleontologist?
Photograph, illustrate, research, read, and write about fossils. I also identify fossils for visitors to the museum and respond to emails about fossil-finds. Among other things, I also compile our fossil club's newsletter; The Ecphora.
4. What was your favorite discovery or field experience?
Most of my recent scientific publications have been about remarkable fossils that were discovered by avocational paleontologists! They discovered the crazy-good fossils and shared them with me.
5. Is there anything else you want to say about being a Paleontologist?
I love coming to "work".
Stephen Godfrey is excavating a Squalodon whale skull from the Calvert Cliffs all while repelling down the cliff!
A Megalodon reconstruction at the Calvert Marine Museum, where Stephen J. Godfrey works! In my oppinion, this is the best reconstruction of a megalodon!