Until recently no fossil evidence had been found to explain how vertebrate life stepped from water to land, leading to a gap in our scientific knowledge of evolution. Known as Romer’s Gap, this mystery has been challenging palaeontologists for generations. However, after years of searching, the answers have begun to be unearthed.
In 2008, palaeontologist Stan Wood uncovered a number of fossils which began to reveal this key chapter in the history of evolution, including a notable amphibian specimen nicknamed ‘Ribbo’. Spurred on by these finds, researchers from National Museums Scotland and institutions around the country have been working together to uncover more examples in Scotland.
Finds featured in the exhibition, including tetrapods (four-legged land vertebrates), fish, plants and land invertebrates, some of which were found as recently as summer 2015, offer unique insights into an ecosystem that existed millions of years ago.
Fossil Hunters introduced the people who uncovered these remarkable finds, discover the scientific techniques used to extract and identify them, and glimpse what life was like before the dinosaurs.
Research behind this exhibition was conducted in partnership with the Universities of Cambridge, Southampton and Leicester as well as the British Geological Survey.
Header image: Illustration of tetrapods on land © Mark Witton.