“Breath-Taking” Brachiopods

Research & Collections

Written by Chilea Dickson, Paleontology Summer Intern

As a biology major at Shaw University, I was very eager to participate in the NSF funded Paleontology internship at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences. Coinciding with my study of living organisms, I was able to step beyond the “grave” to see the history of the living through paleontology, which is the study of fossils. Paleontology has always been a fascination of mine, however, I have not had any exposure to it. But this was my opportunity! The first day of my internship, I was introduced to brachiopods (which I had never even heard of before!)

Photo of a brachiopod Looks like a clam right?! Wrong! It’s a beautiful brachiopod!

What is a brachiopod?

Photo of a brachiopod Look at the very intricate design of this fascinating creature!

Brachiopods are the only members of the phylum Brachiopoda and are a clade of protostomes, meaning the mouth develops before the…

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