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Lecture, 1st May 2019: Dr. Maria McNamara (UCC) on ‘Fossils in technicolour: detection and applications of fossil colour’

1 May, 2019 @ 6:30 PM - 9:00 PM IST

We are delighted to welcome Dr. Maria McNamara at the Geological Survey Ireland (Beggars’ Bush) to talk on this fascinating topic. The lecture is from 6.30pm to 7.30pm, with refreshments from 5.30pm.  All welcome!

Lecture Title: ‘Fossils in technicolour: detection and applications of fossil colour’

Abstract: Spectacular discoveries of evidence of pigments and structural colours in fossils over the last 11 years have birthed a new field in palaeontology – fossil colour. In this seminar I will review this emerging field with examples from both vertebrates and insects, highlighting new developments and how taphonomy – the process of fossil preservation – is key to interpreting evidence of colour in fossils.

About Our Speaker:

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Dr. Maria McNamara is a palaeobiologist in the School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences at University College Cork. Maria has a PhD from University College Dublin and she did postdoctoral research at University College Dublin, before working as a Geopark Geologist in what is now the Burren-Cliffs of Moher Global Geopark.

Maria then worked as a Marie Curie Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Yale University (USA) and did further postdoctoral research at the University of Bristol, before taking up her appointment at UCC. She is now a Senior Lecturer in Geology. Maria’s research focuses on the preservation of soft tissues in the fossil record and how this provides unique insights into the biology of ancient animals. Her current major research projects relate to the preservation of structural and pigmentary colours in fossils and how this informs on the evolution of animal communication strategies and physiology through deep time.

Maria leads a large research group with 9 members including PhD students, postdoctoral researchers and research assistants. Maria’s research is highly interdisciplinary and lies at the interface of geology, palaeontology, evolutionary biology, chemistry and applied physics. As a result her collaborators are from diverse disciplines in institutions around the globe.

See http://research.ucc.ie/profiles/D026/mariamcnamara for more information

About the Irish Geological Association:

The Irish Geological Association was founded in 1959 for academics, teachers, scientists, students and anyone in Ireland who is interested in geology.

Annual Membership is €20 per individual, €5 for students and €30 for a family.


1 May, 2019
6:30 PM - 9:00 PM IST
Event Category:


IGA Council Members