This fossil fish was not found in a mass mortality (beds that contain hundreds of fish on one surface) suggesting it did not die in a catastrophe. It most likely died from starvation or suffocation because it could not spit the Knightia out. (Diplomystus is approximately 17 cm long)
Fossilized plants are more difficult to identify than living plants because their parts often become separated before they are preserved. The plant that produced this flower may be impossible to identify because it is not attached to the rest of the plant.
This 1.7 meter (5 foot 6 inch) softshell turtle is one of the largest turtles from Fossil Lake. During the Eocene, trionychid turtles reached maximum size. Today, North America's largest softshell turtles reach 51 cm (20 inches) in length.
Plants are key to understanding past climates. If a population of 25 or more different shaped leaves are collected from a locality, paleontologists use a technique called leaf-margin analysis to estimate temperature and rainfall.