Laboratory of Stratigraphic Paleoecology


Paleoecology; Stratigraphic Paleobiology, Conservation Paleobiology; Taphonomy, Biodiversity, Pliocene, Quaternary, Fossil macroinvertebrates.


The Laboratory of Stratigraphic Paleoecology is located on the 3rd floor of the Geology and Paleontology Building in Via Zamboni 67 – Bologna. The Lab focuses on sorting and identification of Pliocene and Quaternary macrobentic remains (mainly mollusks) from the Italian sedimentary successions for research, didactic activities and outreach (see below). In addition, the Lab furnishes tools and materials for field activities concerning sample acquisition or paleoecological analyses directly on the outcrops. Lastly, analytical software will allow to analyze acquired macrobenthic datasets for paleoenvironmental, tahonomic and morphometric inferences. The lab is thus functional to the study of paleoenvironmental, paleoclimatic and biodiversity dynamics in relation to climatic and environmental changes occurred in the Mediterranean Basin during the Pliocene and Quaternary.


Strumentazione a disposizione del laboratorio

- Basic equipment for field trip/work or didactic activities (Fishermann’s boots, working gloves, hammer, chisels, sieves, bags etc.) in marginal marine and fluvial environment or on badlands.

- Plastic bags and boxes for storing fossils

- Binocular microscope Mikroskop (low magnifications)

- Fiber optic lighting apparatus Euromex

- Computer e 2 Monitor

- Software for image acquisition (Delta Pix) and basic morphometric characterization (ImageJ) of macrobenthic remains.

- Open source software for classification and catalougue of marine macrobenthic taxa.  

- Open souce software for quantitative analyses of macrobenthic datasets.

- Reference Collections of macrobenthic remains from Pliocene and Quaternary sites

- Catalogues and Atlas of marine mollusks taxa from the Quaternary of Italy.


Didactic and Formation Activities

In this respect, the laboratory supports field and laboratory practices for the following bachelor and master courses:

  • Paleoecologia Stratigrafica course (Mater degrees in Geology and Land Management – UniBo);
  • Geosystems Response to Quaternary Global Changes course (Mater degrees in Science and Management of Nature)
  • Paleontologia (Bachelor in Geological Sciences)

Preparation of master degree and PhD theses;

Activities concerning curricular internships


Laboratory Outreach

The laboratory contributes to university and/or departmental events and outreach activities (few cases below):

2021 Materials and pictures for the University of Florida – Blog on Po – Plain Researches on paleoecology and paleonvironmental reconstructions during the Holocene: Po Plain Blog – Kowalewski Lab (

2020 Materials and images (Fig. 5) concerning the setting up of a didactic area “Il Piccolo Museo dei Fossili” hosted in the Istituto Comprensivo di Vado Monzuno (Referent Ermanno Pavesi)

2019 European Researcher’s Night: La storia del mare Adriatico nelle sue conchiglie programma completo digitale.pdf - Google Drive



Banner of the Stratigraphic Paleoecology lab

Equipped workplace

Binocular microscope

Reference collections

Material relative to the Monsuno fossil museum