Ancient bird preen glands uncovered!

The following is a news piece from UCD that features my latest paper on fossil preen (uropygial) glands and associated lipids preserved in a 48-million-year-old Eocene bird. Links to other media coverage are feature below this news piece. Researchers have shown that a well-preserved preen gland in a 48-million-year-old bird fossil contains its original fatContinue reading “Ancient bird preen glands uncovered!”

Land and soil mismanagement in Ireland: Problems and Solutions

Soil is a dynamic living substance vital for life on Earth. It is also one of our most diverse ecosystems, with numerous studies showing how thousands of different microbial species can live in one single gram of soil. Soil is also the most fundamental requirement for agriculture and has been feeding global populations since the dawn ofContinue reading “Land and soil mismanagement in Ireland: Problems and Solutions”

The Paris Climate Agreement & recent news

Below is a short video summarizing the 2015 Paris Climate Conference Agreement (also known as COP21 – ‘Conference of Parties 21’), which was approved almost a year ago. This is the first global climate deal since the Kyoto Protocol, and aims to limit global average temperature changes to within 2°C climate change, and to combatContinue reading “The Paris Climate Agreement & recent news”

Recent UCD news piece

Below is a reproduced UCD news piece that first appeared here on UCD School of Earth Sciences.   Geobiology and Molecular Fossils Geobiology is the study of the interactions and interrelationships between the physical Earth and biology, especially the ‘unseen’ microbial majority. As a multidisciplinary and highly integrated discipline Geobiology is relatively young, but theContinue reading “Recent UCD news piece”

The ‘gassy’ global seafloor

Methane is a potent greenhouse gas with a multitude of biological as well as non-biological sources. It is also one of the main targets for NASA and European/Russian missions on Mars. One of the most exciting recent advances in understanding Earth’s methane cycle has been the recognition that methane seepage from marine seabed is globally widespread. TheContinue reading “The ‘gassy’ global seafloor”

Recent paper in Geobiology

  Here is a link to my recent paper from the Summons Lab where I use molecular fossil lipids bound within ooid grains to try to reconstruct microbial taxa and processes that are associated with ooid formation. Ooids were common carbonate sands in Precambrian Earth and have puzzled and intrigued geologists for well over aContinue reading “Recent paper in Geobiology”