PalAss, Bristol

The final leg of my Europe trip took me to Bristol, in Somerset, England. The Annual Meeting for the Palaeontological Association was held in and around the University of Bristol and the city Museum over four days this December.

The conference kicked off with a special symposium “Frontiers and Advances in Dinosaur Palaeobiology” on Friday in the impressive Great Hall in the Wills Memorial building, followed by regular sessions over the weekend. The social programme was almost as busy as the scientific one, with many opportunities to socialise and network with fellow palaeontologists.


I presented a poster on the “Digital palaeoneurology of the ‘chirodipterid’ lungfishes from the Devonian” – outlining one of my current projects on the fossil brains of an iconic group of fossil lungfish. It was my first experience presenting a poster rather than an oral presentation, and as such, I found the whole experience much more relaxing than usual!

Monday took us to the Somerset coast on a cold but clear day to inspect the Triassic-Jurassic section on the beach at Watchet. We searched for beautiful nacre “mother-of-pearl” ammonites and ichthyosaur bits, then enjoyed traditional fish and chips at the local pub and a pint (or two) of delicious cider. Many thanks to Dr Jakob Vinther (bottom left image) and colleagues for a very well organised, highly informative and fun meeting and field-trip.


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