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  • MikeR

    The End Of My Pliocene Project

    By MikeR

    When I began this blog late in 2010, my intention was to report on recent field trips however, with the exception of one excursion each into the Upper Miocene, Lower Pliocene and the Calabrian Pleistocene, all of my posts have concentrated on the Upper Pliocene of the US Atlantic and Gulf coastal plains. I already had an extensive collection of Florida Upper Pliocene invertebrates that I had collected while a resident of the state in the late 80s and early 90s. The fossils from these beds are contemporaneous with the Zone 2 Yorktown beds of Virginia and North Carolina that I began collecting in the early 2000s, the Duplin Formation that I collected in 2010 and several trips to Jackson Bluff localities in the Florida panhandle in 2011. These more recent collecting endeavors required a reassessment of the identification of my Florida collection due to a better recognition on my part of modern thoughts on speciation and from working with paleontologists who research these deposits. Also I began rejecting non-peer reviewed books and guides geared toward amateurs which exhibited sloppy and unsubstantiated research. In an effort to free display space I began cross-referencing species from different formations to compile at least what I believe is very accurate species identifications and to place the best example of each species regardless of formation within my display cabinets (fig. 1 & 2). Figure 1. Upper Pliocene (Piacenzian) Bivalvia Eastern United States. Figure 2. Upper Pliocene (Piacenzian) Gastropoda Eastern United States. The attached species list represents the completion of my Pliocene project. Unlike my previous lists which concentrated on the mollusks from particular sites and formations, the 16 page document below is a compilation of all Eastern United States Piacenzian fossils in my collection both vertebrate and invertebrate. The ability to observe different species geographically has led to changes that can be seen if comparing mollusks in the list below to those noted from my previous posts. I have eliminated species which were obviously the same but named differently based upon the regional description of the molluscan fauna by earlier research. The list is not meant to be comprehensive of these deposits, but more of a guide of what can be found. Although my collection is strong in Sarasota area Pinecrest, Jackson Bluff Formation and Zone 2 Yorktown, it is very weak in Pinecrest fauna from the coral reef facies near Miami and the Kissimmee River area, weak in the Duplin Formation (only two localities sampled), and almost absent other than a few trades from early Piacenzian faunas from the Raysor and Goose Creek Formations of the Carolinas. For a more extensive list of species from this period of time I would refer those interested in mollusks to Campbell (1993) and for Florida vertebrates to Hulbert (2001). Piacenzian Fauna List_Reagin.pdf The systematics of the specimens listed are by those fields that I find the most useful in query searches within my Access database and for the most part are as follows: Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus, Species, and Subspecies. In stating the distribution of each species, only the formation is noted not the individual members of the Yorktown and Tamiami Formations. Abbreviations used are Yorktown (Y), Duplin (D), Jackson Bluff (J), Tamiami (T) Chowan River (C ), Goose Creek (G) and Raysor (R ). For those taxa which are near to another cf. (similar to) was used. Less specific affinity (aff.) as well as species undetermined (sp.) are designated. The reasoning behind classification I used is addressed in the notes section below. NOTES Algae. A single species of calcareous algae was found in the limestone facies (Ochopee) of the Tamiami Formation which could not be identified to genus or species. Bryozoa. The identification of bryozoa is highly specialized requiring microscopic identification of various feeding structures. Due to a lack of references and interest I identified most as bryozoa species. Anthozoa. Eleven species of coral were collected; almost all of which are from the Pinecrest. The exception is the ubiquitous Septastrea marylandica which led a commensal lifestyle by growing on hermit crab inhabited gastropod shells. The other coral outside the Pinecrest was Septastrea crassa found near Williamsburg, Virginia which I obtained with a collection of Zone 2 Yorktown fossils in a trade from the 80s. Since I did not collect it personally and have not found this particular species at any of the numerous Zone 2 sites that I have collected over the past decade I have designated it as questionable from the Yorktown (Y?). Brachiopoda. Only a single Upper Pliocene brachiopod is listed. Discinisca lugrubris is a geologically wide ranging species found from the Lower Miocene to the Upper Pliocene colder water Bed 11 of the Pinecrest Member of the Tamiami Formation and the Jackson Bluff Formation. Mollusca. Since Piacenzian deposits are known world wide for their shell beds, it stands to reason that mollusks should dominate. The list contains 244 species and subspecies of bivalves, 370 of gastropods and 6 scaphopods. In general, the warmer the water, the higher is gastropod diversity. The list shows that bivalves are wide ranging and less so with gastropods where many more were found only in the warmer water Tamiami Formation. Aragonitic shells do not preserve well in carbonate environments and are often difficult to identify to species. Those shells from the Ochopee Member of the Tamiami Formation that were preserved as internal casts that I felt were probably represented in Pinecrest were not listed separately (i.e. Ficus sp. Internal cast from the Ochopee is probably Ficus jacksonensis from the Pinecrest). I followed the systematics of Turgeon et. al. (1998) which Roger Portell Director, Division of Invertebrate Paleontology of the Florida Museum of Natural History uses for the mollusks in the Florida Paleontology Society publications. This has led to some interesting changes in classification of gastropods within my collection. In a previous post to the forum, I had mentioned that at some point the subgenera of the family Turritellidae had been reclassified to genera. As stated by Turgeon concerning several recent species that were reclassified in this manner “We do not know the source of this reclassification nor have we seen evidence of subsequent acceptance...” therefore I reclassified all genera in Turritellidae back to Turritella with the exception of valid Vermicularia. The most drastic change in classification had to be with members from the families Turridae, Drillidae, and Conidae. I originally classified all turrids in Turridae by older systematics based solely on shell characteristics. I have known for awhile that at some point the family had been split based upon internal structure of the animal itself and DNA studies. What I did not know was that some of those species had been reclassified as Conidae. Turgeon noted that the study was controversial but was supported by anatomical and radular data and also stated that the affected subfamilies would be better suited in their own family. It was difficult for me to classify genera Glyptostoma and Cythara as Conidae, but I did so since I committed to using Turgeon. Cirripedia. Barnacles were more diverse in the Eastern US Upper Pliocene than today but much like bryozoa their specific identification is difficult. Factors for species id include the tubular structure of the outer wall and the internal plates that protect the animal. I feel that most of my identifications are correct however some are based upon morphological features of the outer shell and geographical range and thus might not be accurate. Decapoda. Crabs are a common component of shell beds, however due to the formation of the beds by winnowing, crabs are rarely preserved intact. The majority of crab finds are as isolated legs, claws, and occasional carapaces. Very little study has been made of Pliocene crabs, but most notable are publications by Rathbun (1935) who identified a wide geographical range of species and those of Florida by Portell and coauthors (2002, 2004). The crabs of the Yorktown Formation are not characterized and in many cases at generic level I used similar to reference (Cf.) which like Cirripedia does not follow proper identification rules. Echinoids. Much like crabs, disarticulated echinoid remains can be common in shell beds. In limestone however, because of their calcitic tests and gentle conditions in carbonate environments, echinoids can be preserved intact. I have not collected in the Raysor and Goose Creek Formations but I did receive echinoids from these deposits in trades from the 90s. At one point both of these units were considered members of the Duplin Formation. This has led to designation in the list (D/R) meaning that the original label listed Duplin Formation but due to the attached calcareous matrix, I believe that the specimens are from the Raysor. Vertebrates. Those collectors who have been fortunate to collect at the PCS/Lee Creek Mine are well aware of the rich vertebrate fauna found in the Yorktown Formation. The Yorktown however is divided into two different units—Zone 1 Lower Pliocene (Zanclean) and Zone 2 Upper Pliocene (Piacenzian). One of the distinguish features of these two zones is the richness of vertebrates in Zone 1 compared to their very sparse nature in Zone 2. Vertebrates during this interval are only common in Pinecrest Beds 4 and 11 and a bone layer in Bed 3 consisting of a mass die off of cormorants during a red tide which I never collected. Marine vertebrates can also be found within the Jackson Bluff Formation but not as plentiful as the previously described beds. Redeposited vertebrate remains are found in the Upper Pliocene of the Carolinas and Virginia and are not included in my list. These include teeth of the Cretaceous sharks Squalicorax kaupi and Scapanorhynchus texanus that I have found in the Duplin Formation and vertebrates from the lag deposit found at the contact between the Upper Cretaceous Black Creek Group and Zone 2 Yorktown Formation at my locality 1012 which probably represented concentrated bones and teeth from the Lower Pliocene and Upper Miocene. Upper Pliocene vertebrate remains besides bony fish, shark and ray in my collection include one marine turtle, one land tortoise, a capybara, a walrus, and a dugong. I classified large whale remains as Mysticeti and smaller remains as Odontoceti dolphin although there could be crossover. REFERENCES Numerous references were used and I have them listed according to those for identification or taxonomy and those that I used in writing about the geology or ecology of the deposits described within my blog. In addition to the below publications, I found Greta Polites Fossil Muricidae Website (http://glpolites.us/murex/index.htm) to be invaluable in eliminating synonymous species. My only deviation from her list was with Ecphora which I only recognized two species, E. quadricostata and bradlyae. Identification Campbell, Lyle. 1975. Check List of Marine Pliocene Mollusks of Eastern North America in Plio-Pleistocene Faunas of the Central Carolina Coastal Plain. Geologic Notes (South Carolina Division of Geology) Vol. 19, No. 3. Campbell, Lyle. 1993. Pliocene Molluscs from the Yorktown and Chowan River Formations in Virginia. Virginia Division of Mineral Resources Publication 127. Dall W.H. 1890-1903. Contributions to the Tertiary Fauna of Florida, with Especial Reference to the Miocene Silex-Beds of Tampa and the Pliocene Beds of the Caloosahatchie River, Part I: Pulmonate, Opisthobranchiate and Orthodont Gastropods, Transactions of the Wagner Free Institute of Science of Philadelphia 3(1-VI). Gardner, J. A. 1944. Mollusca from the Miocene and Lower Pliocene of Virginia and North Carolina: Part 1. Pelecypoda, United States Geological Survey Professional Paper 199-A: iv, pages 1-178, plates 1-23 Gardner, J. A. 1948. Mollusca from the Miocene and Lower Pliocene of Virginia and North Carolina: Part 2. Scaphopoda and Gastropoda, United States Geological Survey Professional Paper 199-B: iv, pages 179-310, plates 24-38, [iii] Gardner, J. A. and T.H. Aldrich. 1919. Mollusca from the Upper Miocene of South Carolina: with Descriptions of New Species. Proceedings of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia 71: pages 17-53. Gibson, Thomas G. 1987. Miocene and Pliocene Pectinidae (Bivalvia) from the Lee Creek Mine and Adjacent Areas in Geology and Paleontology of the Lee Creek Mine, North Carolina, II. Smithsonian Contributions to Paleobiology No. 61. Hendricks, Jonathan. 2008. The genus Conus (Mollusca: Neogastropoda) in the Plio-Pleistocene of the southeastern United States, Bulletins of American Paleontology 375. Kohno, Naoki and Ray, Clayton E. 2008. Pliocene Walruses from the Yorktown Formation of Virginia and North Carolina, and a Systematic Revision of the North Atlantic Pliocene Walruses in The Geology and Paleontology of the Lee Creek Mine, North Carolina, IV. Virginia Museum of Natural History Special Publication No. 14. Mansfield, W.C. 1930. Miocene Gastropods and Scaphopods of the Choctawhatchee Formation of Florida, Florida Geological Survey Bulletin 3, 189 pages. Mansfield, W.C. 1931. Some tertiary mollusks from southern Florida. Proceedings of the United States National Museum, v. 79. Mansfield, W.C. 1931. Pliocene Fossils from Limestone in Southern Florida in Shorter Contributions to General Geology, USGS Professional Paper 170, 11 pages. Mansfield, W.C. 1932. Miocene Pelecypods of the Choctawhatchee Formation of Florida, Florida Geological Survey Bulletin 8, 233 pages. Mansfield, W.C. 1936. Stratigraphic Significance of Miocene, Pliocene, and Pleistocene Pectinidae in the Southeastern United States, Journal of Paleontology, Vol 10, No. 3, 24 pages. Mansfield, W.C. 1939. Notes on the Upper Tertiary and Pleistocene Mollusks of Peninsular Florida, Florida Geological Survey Bulletin 18, 128 pages. Mansfield, W.C., 1943 [1944]. Stratigraphy of the Miocene of Virginia and the Miocene and Pliocene of North Carolina in Gardner, Julia ed. Mollusca from the Miocene and Lower Pliocene of Virginia and North Carolina. USGS Professional Paper 199A, p. 1-19. Hollister, S.C. 1971. New Vasum Species of the Subgenus Hystrivasum. Bulletins of American Paleontology 262. Olsson, A.A. 1967 (1993 Reprint). Some Tertiary Mollusks from South Florida and the Caribbean, Originally - Bulletins of American Paleontology 54(242), The Paleontological Research Institute Special Publication 19: pages 11-75, 9 plates Olsson, A.A., and A. Harbison. 1953 (1990 Reprint). Pliocene Mollusca of Southern Florida with Special Reference to Those from North Saint Petersburg, with special chapters on Turridae by W.G. Fargo and Vitinellidae and Fresh-water Mollusks by H.A. Pilsbry, The Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia Monographs 8, The Shell Museum and Educational Foundation, 457 pages, 65 plates Olsson, A.A., and R.E. Petit. 1964. Some Neogene Mollusca from Florida and the Carolinas, Bulletins of American Paleontology 47(217): pages 509-574, plates 77-83 Olsson, A.A., and R.E. Petit. 1968 (1993 Reprint). Notes on Siphocypraea, Originally - Special Publication 9, The Paleontological Research Institute Special Publication 19: pages 77-88. Petuch, Edward J. 1994. Atlas of Florida Fossil Shells (Pliocene and Pleistocene Marine Gastropods). Chicago Spectrum Press. Portell, Roger W. and Craig W. Oyen. June 2002. Pliocene and Pleistocene Echinoids. Florida Fossil Invertebrates Part 3, 30pp. Portell, Roger W. and Jeffery G. Agnew. February 2004. Pliocene and Pleistocene Decapod Crustaceans. Florida Fossil Invertebrates Part 4, 29 pp. Portell, Roger W. November 2004. Eocene, Oligocene and Miocene Decapod Crustaceans. Florida Fossil Invertebrates Part 4, 29 pp. Portell, Roger W. and B. Alex Kittle. December 2010. Mollusca, Bermont Formation (Middle Pleistocene). Florida Fossil Invertebrates Part 13, 40 pp. Rathbun, Mary J. 1935. Fossil Crustacea of the Atlantic and Gulf coastal plain. Geological Society of America. Special papers; no. 2. Tucker, H.I. and Druid Wilson. 1932. Some new or otherwise interesting fossils from the Florida Tertiary. Bulletins of American paleontology; v. 18: no. 65. Tucker, H.I. and Druid Wilson. 1933. A second contribution to the Neogene paleontology of South Florida. Bulletins of American paleontology; v. 18: no. 66. Tuomey, M., and F.S. Holmes. 1855-1856 (1974 Reprint). Pleiocene Fossils of South-Carolina: Containing Descriptions and Figures of the Polyparia, Echinodermata and Mollusca, Original pages 1-30 and plates 1-12 published in 1855, Original pages 31-152 and plates 13-30 published in 1856, The Paleontological Research Institution Special Publication 12: xvi, 152 pages, 30 plates, [addendum] Ward L.W. and Blackwelder, B.W. 1975. Chesapecten, a New “Genus of Pectinidae (Mollusca: Bivalvia) from the Miocene and Pliocene of Eastern North America. USGS Professional Paper 861. Whitmore, Frank C. Jr and Kaltenbach, James A. 2008. Neogene Cetacea of the Lee Creek Phosphate Mine, North Carolina in The Geology and Paleontology of the Lee Creek Mine, North Carolina, IV. Virginia Museum of Natural History Special Publication No. 14. Weisbord, Norman E. 1966. Some late Cenozoic cirripeds from Venezuela and Florida. Bull. Amer. Paleont., vol. 50, no. 225, pp. 1-145, pls. 1-12. Weisbord, Norman E. 1974. Late Cenozoic Corals of South Florida. Bulletins of American Paleontology vol. 66, no. 285. 544 pp. Zullo, Victor A., 1992. Revision of the balanid barnacle genus Concavus Newman. Supplement to Journal of Paleontology, v. 66, no. 6, pt. II. Zullo, Victor A. and Portell, Roger W. 1993. Paleobiogeography of the Late Cenozoic Barnacle Fauna of Florida in The Neogene of Florida and Adjacent Regions, Florida Geological Survey Special Publication No. 37. Paleoecology Allmon, Warren D. 1992. Whence Southern Florida’s Plio-Pleistocene shell beds? Plio-Pleistocene Stratigraphy and Paleontology of Southern Florida, Florida Geological Survey Special Publication No. 36. Allmon, Warren D; Rosenberg, Gary; Portell, Roger W.; and Schindler, Kevin S. 1993. Diversity of Atlantic Coastal Plain Mollusks since the Pliocene. Science, vol. 260:1626-1629. Allmon, Warren D; Spizuco, Mathew P. and Jones, Douglas S. 1995. Taphonomy and paleoenvironment of two turritellid-gastropod-rich beds, Pliocene of Florida. Lethaia, vol. 28:75-83. Allmon, Warren D; Emslie, Steven D.; Jones, Douglas S.; and Morgan, Gary S. 1996. Late Neogene Oceanographic change along Florida’s West Coast: Evidence and mechanisms. The Journal of Geology, vol. 104:143-162. Christie, Max. 2009. Ecological Interactions Across a Plio-Pleistocene Interval of Faunal Turnover: Naticid Cannibalism North and South of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. Departmental Honors in Interdisciplinary Studies Thesis, The College of William and Mary. Geary, Dana H. and Allmon, Warren D. 1990. Biological and Physical Contributions to the Accumulation of Strombid Gastropods in a Pliocene Shell Bed. Palaios vol. 5:259-272. Jones, Douglas S and Allmon, Warren D. 1999. Pliocene marine temperatures on the West Coast of Florida: Estimates from mollusk shell stable isotopes In J.H. Wrenn, J.-P. Suc, and S.A.G. Leroy, eds., The Pliocene: Time of Change. American Association of Stratigraphic Palynologists Foundation, Dallas, Texas, pp. 241-250. Molnar, Peter. 2008. Closing of the Central American Seaway and the Ice Age: A critical review. Paleoceanography Volume 21. Petuch, Edward J. 2004. Cenozoic Seas. CRC Press. Petuch, Edward J. 2007. The Geology of the Everglades and Adjacent Areas. CRC Press. Schmidt, D. N., 2007. The closure history of the Panama Isthmus: Evidence from isotopes and fossils to models and molecules. In: Williams, M., Haywood, A. M., Gregory, J. F., and Schmidt, D. N. Eds.), Deep time perspectives on climate change - marrying the signal from computer models and biological proxies. Geological Society of London, London. Biostratigraphy Campbell, Kenneth M. 1985. Alum Bluff Liberty County, Florida. Florida Geological Survey Open File Report 9. Ketcher, Kathleen. 1992. Stratigraphy and Environment of Bed 11 of the "Pinecrest" Beds at Sarasota, Florida in Plio-Pleistocene Stratigraphy and Paleontology of Southern Florida, Florida Geological Survey Special Publication No. 36. Means, Harley. 2002. Introduction to the Geology of the Upper Apalachicola River Basin in Geologic Exposures Along the Upper Apalachicola River. Southeastern Geological Society Field Trip Guidebook 42. Missimer, Thomas M. 1992. Stratigraphic relationships of sediment facies within the Tamiami Formation of Southwest Florida: Proposed intraformational correlations. Plio-Pleistocene Stratigraphy and Paleontology of Southern Florida, Florida Geological Survey Special Publication No. 36. Petuch, E.J. 1982. Notes on the molluscan paleontology of the Pinecrest Beds at Sarasota, Florida with the description of Pyruella, a stratigraphically important new genus: Proceedings of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, v. 134, p. 12–30. Ward, Lauck W. 1992. Tertiary Molluscan Assemblages from the Salisbury Embayment of Virginia. Virginia Journal of Science, Volume 43, no. 1B. Ward, Lauck W. 1992. Diagnostic Mollusks from the APAC Pit, Sarasota, Florida in Plio-Pleistocene Stratigraphy and Paleontology of Southern Florida, Florida Geological Survey Special Publication No. 36. Ward, Lauck W. 1993. Pliocene Stratigraphy and Biostratigraphy, Virginia to Florida in The Neogene of Florida and Adjacent Regions, Florida Geological Survey Special Publication No. 37. Ward, Lauck W. 2008. Synthesis of Paleontological and Stratigraphic Investigations at the Lee Creek Mine, Aurora, NC (1958-2007) in The Geology and Paleontology of the Lee Creek Mine, North Carolina, IV. Virginia Museum of Natural History Special Publication No. 14. Yon, J. William. 1965. Adventures in geology at Jackson Bluff. Florida Geological Survey: Special publication 14. Systematics Hulbert, Richard C. (ed.). 2001. The Fossils Vertebrates of Florida. University Press of Florida. Turgeon, D.D. et al. 1998. Common and scientific names of aquatic invertebrates from the United States and Canada: mollusks. Second edition. American Fisheries Society Special Publication. No. 26. 526 pp.
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  • JohnJ

    Ancient Hunters

    By JohnJ

    June 5, 2010 Barry held his camera barely two feet away from the back of an Agkistrodon piscivorus. Although a small snake, it was still very dangerous and he positioned his camera based on years of experience with these reptiles. Known more commonly as a Cottonmouth or Water Moccasin, the twelve inch juvenile snake had coloration similar to the closely related Copperhead. However, its patterns were muted by late afternoon shadows in a remote location that was not favorable to an easy medical evacuation. So, we slowly moved away and eased our paddles back in the water to complete an adventure which began long before daylight. Almost twelve hours earlier my friend and I had packed our gear, food, and water into my eighteen foot canoe. Soon after, our paddles fell into a synchronous rhythm that allowed us to quietly experience an aquatic wilderness. We were searching in Texas - hunting in alluvial debris and Pleistocene terraces for the slightest hint of extinct creatures. Our unrushed pace allowed us the time to get a feel for the local geology. Occasionally, groundwater from the surrounding area made its way to the base of the Pleistocene gravels and created springs which emerged just above older impermeable shale. The cool water supported rich vegetation that resisted the summer sun. It was also a visual key to the strata we were trying to find. A little later, we found an area where the gravel spilled onto a ledge just above the water. Almost immediately I spotted a gravel encrusted bone fragment. I looked over to see Barry higher up on the river terrace. Still scanning the area, I hollered, “Hey, I found some mineralized bone over here. Uhhh…wait, here’s another one.” I noticed the second piece was gnarly and pitted while Barry made his way down to inspect my finds. “What do you think of the encrusted bone?” I asked. He replied, “Not sure; but there’s no doubt it’s old. Which bone do you think it is?” I tried to imagine the fossil without the encrusting gravel, “Looks like it could be the ‘joint’ end of a scapula…I’m not sure about the second one, though.” Before and after cleaning – proximal scapula & unknown fragment I headed back to the canoe to pack away my finds while Barry searched further down the ledge. It wasn’t long before he yelled he had found more bone, and after I paddled the boat over to him, he grinned and asked me to find the camouflaged fossil. The fragment was difficult to spot amid the varied textures of rock and silt. We were off to a good start. Barry's mineralized bone fragment In Texas, June temperatures can quickly reach the upper 90’s. We maintained a regular fluid intake and an occasional soak in the water. Proper hydration and cooling were essential for us to enjoy an amazing adventure versus a headache pounding endurance test. Since we still had more than a dozen miles to travel, the hot conditions could not be ignored. A few miles later a short rocky ledge barely emerged from the water. It looked like a good spot to check and take a break. What I really did not expect was to step a few feet from the boat and see a broken stone dart point. I looked at it with a little skepticism; the area seemed like a place fisherman would use to access the water and I wondered if someone had passed the time trying to replicate an ancient weapon. But the patina on a few nearby flakes confirmed the find was old. Barry searched the rocky debris fan on the downstream end of the ledge. I let him know to keep an eye out for more than bone and kept scanning the ground. Before me was an area the size of two cars where the water had peeled away part of an upper bank which had slipped into the water. I stopped. There, in the gravel and weeds, were more flakes…and another dart point! As I reached for my camera, I saw another broken point by my knee…a cool moment. Then things started to get comical - in an amazing sort of way - because as I took the photo of the first point, I spotted a third one just beyond it…an incredible moment! Still kneeling in the same spot, I yelled to Barry, “Hey, you’re not going to believe this, but I’ve found…hang on….” I shook my head in disbelief at the fourth late Archaic projectile point tucked in the gravel. “You have to come over here, now,” I smiled. I tried to explain to him what had just happened – pointing out each of the finds. He was as awestruck as I, but we both almost lost composure when, within seconds of ‘show and tell’, another light colored point met my eye a few inches from where I laid the paddle. I edged backward to get a good camera angle. Then, I just looked up at Barry in stunned silence and back down again beside my other knee at a small gray-purple dart point. That is when we both erupted with the excitement of two kids. “I’m now walking away. There have to be more here; so you find them,” I jokingly announced as I headed upstream to survey the ledge. Savoring an unbelievable fifteen minutes of discovery included the analytical questions forced by the finds. Often people have asked, “Where did these artifacts come from?” Sometimes the answer is simple because the ‘site’ still exists. Other times, I will touch two fingers together in front of me, representing a point in space, because similar coordinates may be all that remain of ancient eroded camps. My quick recon of the area seemed to confirm a similar origin for these artifacts. Our timing had offered us the chance to experience something that would have been erased by the next flood. My six dart points fill Barry’s hand Barry’s voice carried down the bank, “I found one!” I saw him gently scratching the sand and gravel in the weeds. I took in the view of the area because I wanted to remember this place and time. Barry called out again, “Hey, you should see this large white base I found!” By the time I made it back to him, he had found another dart! While he pointed out his finds, I felt like we were functioning in a mild state of shock – still trying to wrap our minds around what was happening. After a few more broken finds and photos, we cooled off in the water. In all we found 19 pieces; some were complete and some were fragments. Dream-like remnants of the artifact discoveries stayed with us for miles. I told Barry I was not sure I would have believed the event if I had not been part of it. Roughly thirteen hundred years earlier, someone made the weapons we found. Handling them was like touching an old pocket knife owned by your great grandfather or holding an old wooden spoon used by your great grandmother - except, they were much older and no one remembered the owners anymore. We could not know what the circumstances were during the last moments someone held these artifacts, but we were the next men to hold them and imagine those days. We found a few pieces of fossil bone over the next couple of hours and it really began to get hot. To get relief from the temperature, we paddled closer to the shady banks. On few occasions we startled beavers from their dens. Not many things can get your attention quicker than a forty pound animal hurtling into the water on the edge of your vision. My only regret was that the camera had not recorded our comical reactions. Then, as we rounded a large bend, a huge gravel bar came into view. In the distance, I could see something big lying on the rocks. “Barry, what’s that?” “I don’t know….” He shaded his eyes and leaned forward, then exploded, “IT’S A HUGE GAR!” He spun to face me, “Can I have the SKULL?!” He spun back, “It’s HUGE! You’ve got to let me have it, please!” He sounded like a ten year old begging for his favorite birthday present. It was hilarious. But my smile was temporarily gagged when I caught a whiff of the almost dry carcass. “If you can separate the skull from the rest, you can have it…but it stays on your end of the canoe,” I winced. The smell matched the size of the alligator gar – it was a monster. I was fascinated to see such a large specimen up close. Barry finally separated his prize from its ragged remains. Then, he placed it in the canoe under his seat and we continued to search the bar. The multi-colored gravel camouflaged many pieces of petrified wood and the new ‘gar skull owner’ took advantage of the canoe’s carrying capacity. We left shore a little heavier and smellier. Unfortunately for me, the prevailing wind came from the bow of the boat. I joked with him about the odor coming from his direction, but he firmly insisted he was unaware of any stench. On another bar, the gravel teased us with more bits of bone; then Barry spotted a large brown lump. He called me over to take some photos. Whose bone he had found was not immediately obvious; but it had some size. Only after he freed it from the sand were the features of a large vertebra confirmed. Likely from a mammoth, it had suffered the erosive effects of time and water. Yet, Barry grinned. He had accomplished one of the goals we had for the trip – find mammoth bone. The heat was relentless, but we kept cooling off and drinking. Even the butterflies were frequently tapping moisture and minerals in the damp sand. Eventually, we reached an area where the channel narrowed and we took advantage of the shade. I was looking for beaver dens when Barry cried, “Snake! Back there by the large stump!” We buried the paddles in a series of strong back strokes to reverse our direction. I finally spotted the handsome reptile crawling into a small pile of logs. I could tell he wanted to catch it, when he almost whispered, “Elaphe obsoleta lindheimeri.” After three seconds of heat affected thinking, I realized he had not issued curses to move faster, but had just named the scientific classification for a Texas Rat Snake – the name that had passed through my mind 5 seconds earlier…. Barry scrambled up the bank and had the snake in hand within two minutes. He slowly manipulated it while I took photos. I have always enjoyed my encounters with these non-poisonous reptiles. They can be very aggressive and strike repeatedly, or try to intimidate any threats with their loud hiss and vibrating tail. He left on the log where we found it. About a half hour downstream we were exposed again to the late afternoon sun. It reflected from the water and the barren high bluffs beside us. We paddled and scanned both water and banks. Through the salty sweat in my eyes, I saw something out of place halfway up one of the bluffs. “OK, that can’t be what I think it is, can it Barry?” A bowling ball sized dome contrasted sharply with the surrounding tan soil. We slowed the canoe to a stop. I remembered the “dome” of a four foot mammoth humerus I had found almost a year earlier…. My heart rate increased. Barry insisted, “John, that shape is too perfect; it has to be a bone.” The closer we got the boat, the more my pulse quickened. From fifteen feet below it, I still had to get closer to allow myself to acknowledge the obvious…it was a bone! We positioned the canoe as close as possible to the vertical bank. The water was not moving fast there, but it was deep. In a tricky move that involved me stepping on the tip of the stern and stabbing my rock hammer into the soil of the steep ledge above, I pulled myself up to a spot where I could rest. Our access point was a little downstream of the “dome”, so I had to dig footholds to make my way to the find. It was impressive when I could finally rest beside it. “Hey Barry, it’s bone!” I grinned. After a difficult time staging a few digging tools, we started to excavate. I carefully determined the perimeter of the fossil and had some vivid flashbacks to last year’s humerus find. However, the deeper we dug, the more it became apparent that the rest of the bone was not attached. We tested the ‘ball’ for movement and it popped free of the matrix below. In the soil below, we did not find any more evidence of bone. Initially it seemed there was a large scavenging scar across the surface, but after cleaning, the mark appeared to be an eroded part of the internal vascular structure. Other old gouges and marks may have been due to ancient scavenging. Shape and size suggested I had found my first mammoth ‘femur ball’ or the head of the femur. Regardless of the number of mammoth fossils I have found, they never cease to spark my imagination. Mammoth femur head – approx. 7 inches in diameter Scars and vascular structures The shadows had begun to lengthen by the time we loaded the femur ball and started back downstream. Temperatures had dropped a few degrees which energized us for the next few miles. In a large eddy, we saw another snake crossing the water and sped up to see it. Both of us recognized the juvenile Water Moccasin as it paused and floated on the water. Barry pulled out his camera and I positioned the canoe to assist him. All was going well until the young snake thought the boat would make a good rest stop. The important result was that no one entered the water and nothing entered the canoe. I repositioned us to allow the little pit viper to reach the bank. It seemed to respond to the security of solid ground and assumed the confident demeanor of the species. We reached the take-out after twelve hours on the water. Tired, but feeling the satisfaction of an incredible adventure, we completed a relatively short shuttle run back upstream. The trip had so many layers – so many memories. We hunted and found what we sought. And somewhere between our imaginations, the water, willows, cottonwood, and stone, we caught a reflective glimpse of the ancient hunters.
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  • andreas

    The Columbianus Zone/alaunium 2/ Norium/upper Triassic, In The So Called “Hallstatt Limestone” Of The Northern Calcareous Alps In Austria

    By andreas

    The columbianus Zone/Alaunium 2/ Norium/Upper Triassic in the so called "Hallstatt Limestone" of the Northern Calcareous Alps in Austria Dear Fossil Forum members! This pictured report about the ammonite bearing Triassic Hallstatt limestone will be the first one of a continuous series of reports. Since the beginning of the geological research in the Northern Calcareous Alps of Austria in the 19th century, about 500 species of Triassic ammonites have been described from the Hallstatt limestone by Mojsisovics, Hauer, Diener and other authors. The most important person in the development of the first Alpine Triassic ammonoid biostratigraphy was the Austrian palaeontologist Edmund von Mojsisovics. When viewing his classical monographs one is overwhelmed by the stunning Lithographics created by the artists of the late 19th century. Every recent serious triassic ammonoid researcher includes these old works in the standard literature of triassic ammonoids. Unfortunely his ammonoid bio-chronostratigraphic scale had some mistakes (changed zones) especially the incorrect stratigraphic position of some ammonoid zones in the Norian stage. It was the merit of E.T. Tozer to discover this weakness and to correct it. Hallstatt limestone facies is a type of triassic Ammonitico Rosso facies which also occurs in several other locations all over the world. The Hallstatt Limestone Facies of Austria consists typically of red to grey –coloured, in some parts abundantly fossiliferous limestones locally interbedded with marls. Also strongly condensed successions are common. Fossils mostly do not occur in continuous layers but in so called lenses and fissure fillings. The most common fossils are Ammonoids and Nautiloids, but Crinoids ossicles, Bivalves, Conodonts and Gastropods also occur. In this report I will introduce you to the Triassic ammonoid zone of the Alaunium 2 /Norium/ Upper Triassic of the Hallstatt formation. The stratigraphic level lower Alaunium 1 will be shown in a future report. Fig.1 A very beautiful view of a tectonic border. The Valley in front marks the tectonic border between the mainly Triassic Hallstatt unit und the Tirolikum unit of the Totengebirgs nappe. The highest mountain shown on the picture is the "Loser". The well bedded limestone in the summit area are of Jurassic age. This is in turn resting on Triassic "Dachstein" limestone that ends roughly in the middle of the picture. The name of this stage was chosen by Mojsisovics after the Celtic folk of the Alauns. In historical times this tribe lived in the forelands of the calcareous Alps in the area of the later Roman province Noricum. Zone ammonite of the Alaunium 2, outside of the Tethys realm, is Mesohimavatites columbianus Mc LEARN, well known from the boreal Triassic of British Columbia in Canada. In the Tethys realm the whole Alaunium is split into three subdivisions. Alaunium 1 = Bicrenatus -Zone, Alaunium 2 = (instead Columbianus) Hogarti- Zone, Alaunium 3 = (instead Columbianus) Macer -Zone The subzones I-IV shown in the timescale below were established after bed by bed collections in the well-bedded erratic limestone blocks of Timor by the Austrian geologist Franz Tatzreiter. Fig.2 In the Hallstatt limestone of the northern calcareous Alps, Himavatites sp. occurs very scarcely. It is impossible to use this genus for Stratigraphic aims on new detected locations. A normal collector could use the following rough scheme to insert ammonoids in the right stratigraphic subzone. But notice that strong condensation, fissure filling etc. can blur this schema. For a newbie collector it is much more difficult to find some fossils there at all. To place them into the right ammonoid zone is the easier part of the exercise. Rough scheme, to place ammonoids into the right subzones of the Alaunium 2 in the Hallstatt limestone. Subzone I+II: Distichites (especiallys in II) but no Halorites, Subzone III: Halorites starts, Distichites can be found too, but ends in this subzone, Subzone IV: Halorites frequent, main zone of „catenate Halorites" especially in the later time of this subzone. In the upper sphere of subzone 3 and in the lower sphere of subzone 4 Halorites sp. is a very common faunal element. In locations which expose this time interval Halorites is more common than other leiostraca (=ammonoids without sculpture) ammonoids like Arcestes sp. The often used term Halorites horizon (KRYSTYN, L., 1973) points that out exactly. Representative for the family of the Haloritidae, is shown Halorites ramsaueri (QUENST.),.Sommeraukogel, MOJSISOVICS (Bd. II), Wien 1893, Tafel 71, 76 und 77. Fig.3 The venter views laterally right show the variability of the end living chamber (after pictures by MOJSISOVICS Bd. II, Wien 1893) of Halorites ramsaueri QUENST. The right venter view could also be termed as a Halorites macer. The difference between H. macer and H. ramsaueri is not clear due to the great variability of these two species and is totally questionable in my opinion. Fig.4 Catenohalorites catenatus BUCH form MOJSISOVICS (Bd. II), Wien 1893 To the genus „Catenohalorites" count all species of Halorites, which show the chain like („catenat") arranged nodes of the inner whorls on the phragmocon too. (The inner whorls are more or less catenat by all Halorites sp.) Historical locations Beside the well known historical location of the Sommeraukogel, which exposed all four subzones, there are several other historical locations. For example: Hallein, Hoher Student, Leisling, Pötschenhöhe, Rossmoos and Röthelstein. Years ago I was lucky to find a talus block in an area of such an historical location. Later in this report I will show the ammonoids of this block. Two new faunas shown here in this report came from locations hitherto not yet described. Fauna 1 The first new location is in an area where the normal succession of limestone is penetrated by fractures with fissure filling and reworked horizons. One reworked horizon (not for sure yet, it could also be an untypical fissure filling) shows a Halorites fauna. Two nearby located, clear fissure fillings show a faunal association with Distichites but without Halorites. A shell fragment of a Himavatites sp. in the Distichites fissure may confirm the higher hogarti zone. One highlight of the Halorites location was the discovering of a Bambanagites MOJS. 1896. This is the first evidence of this genus in the Hallstatt realm. So far Bambanagites is yet only known from the Halorites limestone of the Bambanag- succession on Niti- Pass (Himalaya) in India, described by MOJSISOVICS with two species (B. schlagintweiti MOJS. and B. dieneri MOJS) In Dieners work, „Fauna of the Tropites-Limestone of Byans", another species, B. kraffti DIENER, is described. The Venter of B. kraffti is very sharp with only weak waves on the flank. Further research on Bambanagites (member of the family Pinacoceratidae) resulted in no other location/occurrence than the above mentioned location in India. Maybe Bambanagites occurs also in the Triassic of Timor. I haven't found any citation but judging by the frequent occurrence of fauna of alaunian ammonites there, it could be possible to find some. Fig 5 Bambanagites cf. dieneri MOJS. a first evidence in the Hallstatt limestone of the eastern Alps, possibly a worldwide first evidence outside the type locality in India. Fig.6 Bambanagites Dieneri, MOJSISOVICS 1896 .Cephalopoden der oberen Trias des Himalaya Taf. XVIII, Fig. 3 - 6. The impression of the Bambanagites sp. is on the backside of this slab with Halorites cf. macer MOJS.(8cm) on the following picture Fig.7 Halorites cf. macer MOJS. found in the location together with Bambanagites Fig.8 Halorites sp. with very prominent nodes on the venter Fig.9 Washed block from this location, with visible Halorites sp. Several other ammonoid species are also visible on this block which are frequent in the Alaunium 2. Rhacophyllites neojurensis QUENST. , Placites sp,, Halorites div. sp., Arcestes sp., Leislingites sp., Megaphyllites sp., Paracladiscites multilobatus BRONN., Steinmannites hoernesi HAUER, Alloclionites ares MOJS It is further worth a mention about the occurrence of the Ammonite genus. cf. Psamateiceras in this location. Natural picture size is 45cm. Other important ammonoid species of the macer zone A beautiful, conspicuous faunal element of the macer zone is Steinmannites sp. With different species this genus shows its maximum in this zone and was found relatively frequently in this location within the Halorites location. Fig.10 Steinmannites hoernesi (HAUER) from the Halorites-area in compairson with a Fig.11 cf. Eosteinmannites sp. from the Distichites-area of this location. Fig.12 ? cf. Pseudosirenites sp.(3cm) or cf. Mesohimavatites sp. from the Halorites-area Fig.13 Paracladiscites multilobatus BRONN. (5cm) Another frequent faunal element of the Alaunium 2 is Paracladiscites multilobatus BRONN. This species differs from Cladiscites and Hypocladiscites by the absence of the spiral striations. Only fine radial growth lines are visible on the shell. The genus Paracladiscites reaches throughout the whole columbianus- Zone up to the zone of Sagenites reticulatus/Cochloceras/Paracochloceras (Sevat2) Distichites Fig.14 Distichites megacanthus MOJS. from the Distichites area of this location. Fig.15 Venter view of Distichites megacanthus MOJS. Diameter is 19 cm; this is rather the growth limit of this species. Distichites sp. is easy to determine by the two bulges following the venter furrow Fig.16 Distichites cf. kmetyi (8cm) of this location Distichites were found in different species at this location but very scarcely. From 30-40 other ammonite's roughly one piece of Distichites sp. was found. Most common ammonites are Placites and Arcestes. Fig.17 Rhacophyllites neojurensis QUENST. (7cm) from the Distichites-area Rhacophyllites sp. runs up to the Sevat Fauna 2 The second new location comes from another area and is also a reworked horizon. This horizon is associated to a small tectonic fault which strikes through the surrounding normal-bedded limestone at a low angle. This zone of weakness may have already been active at the time of the limestone sedimentation and may have worked as a trap for fossils. The stratigraphic lower part (compared to the surrounding limestone beds) of this horizon bears big Halorites cf. ramsaueri embedded in micritic red limestone which was tectonically stressed. In the stratigraphic younger part of this horizon, compared to the normal-bedded surrounding limestone beds, sparitic fissure filling is given in which abundant small ammonoids and gastropods are embedded. According to the occurrence of scarce Sagenites sp. small catenate Halorites and small Hydrozoans, this sparitic part of the fissure filling dates into the subzone IV (after Tatzreiter). Fig.18 Cross-section of a Rhacophyllites neojurensis QUENST. In situ picture from the white sparitic filled stratigraphic upper part of the fissure. Natural size of the picture ca.30x25cm The left side of the picture shows how unspectacular the weathered rock looks, although the mossy vegetation has been removed before by hand. Fig.19 Gastropoda and Halorites-core (1cm), embedded in white calcite. Fig. 20 Slab with Steinmannites hoernesi HAUER, Paracladiscites multilobatus BRONN, Arcestes sp., Placites sp. und Leislingites sp., within white calcite embedded red limestone lithoclasts of the stratigraphic upper part of the fissure. Slab size is 16cm Fig.21 Visible Halorites sp. end body chamber from the stratigraphic lower part of this fissure. Fig.22 Block from the tectonically stressed area of this fissure. Well visible are the calcitically healed slip movements in this rock which show us a "frozen" moment during the lithification of this limestone. Now to the aforementioned talus block of an historical location. After the first blow of the hammer a Halorites was visible. By finding an Amarassites cf. semiplicatus HAUER I was able to date the fauna of this block into the Subzone III afterTatzreiter. Fig.23 Amarassites cf. semiplicatus HAUER (5cm) from the above mentioned talus block of an historical location. Fig.24 Halorites sp., freshly split talus block. Natural picture size ca.20cm At the end of my report some pictures of another Alaunian 3 Fauna. From this location I have less material. The faunal composition differs a little bit from the above mentioned locations. New to this location is cf. Parajuvavites mercedis MOJS. and cf. ?Acanthothetidites sp. Fig.25 Slab from this Alaunian fissure with cf. ? Acanthothetidites sp, („thorned"Ammonite on top, 3cm) Fig.26 Paracladiscites multilobatus BRONN, Arcestes sp., Parajuvavites cf. mercedis MOJS.(ribbed ammonite) Size of slab ca. 10cm Fig.27 Matrixrock of this location Natural size on picture ca. 35cm I hope you have enjoyed this report about my favourite collecting area. Unfortunly I cannot load up graphics. Maybe it is possible and I only do not know how to do this. Maybe somebody can help me in this case. A special thank is given to Fossil forum member "Ludwigia" for correcting my uncivil kind of English. Best regards Andreas Literature: DIENER, C.: Fauna of the Tropites-limestone of Byans. In: Himalayan Fossils, Palaeontologia Indica,(ser.15) 5/1, 1-201, Calcutta 1906 KRYSTYN, L. Zur Ammoniten und Conodonten-Stratigraphie der Hallstätter Obertrias(Salzkammergut, Österreich), Verh.Geol. B.-A., Wien 1973 KRYSTYN, L., SCHÄFFER, G. & SCHLAGER, W. (1971b): Der Stratotypus des Nor.- Annales Inst. Geol. Publ. Hungar., 54, 2, 607-629, 7 Abb., Budapest MOJSISOVICS, E. 1893: Die Cephalopoden der Hallstätter Kalke, Abhandlungen der Kaiserlich-Königlichen Geologischen Reichsanstalt, II Band, Wien 1893 MOJSISOVICS, E. 1896: Beiträge zur Kenntniss der obertriadischen Cephalopoden Faunen des Himalaya, Denkschriften der Kaiserlichen Akademie der Wissenschaften Mathematisch–naturwissenschaftliche Classe, 63, 575–701. Wien 1896, TATZREITER, F. 1981, Ammonitenfauna und Stratigraphie im höheren Nor(Alaun, Trias) der Tethys aufgrund neuer Untersuchungen in Timor, Denkschr. Österr. Akad. Wiss., math.-naturwiss. KI., 121, Wien 1981, Springer Verlag TATZREITER, F. 1985. Zur Kenntnis der obertriadischen (Nor; Alaun, Sevat) trachyostraken Ammonoideen Jb. Geol. B.-A. ISSN 0016-7800 Band 128 Heft 2 S.219-226 Wien, Oktober 1985, 8 Abbildungen TATZREITER,F. 1984: Bericht über paläontologische Untersuchungen in Hallstätterkalken auf Blatt 76 Wr. Neustadt und 96 Bad Ischl. - Jb. Geol. B.-A., 128/2, Wien 1985 TOZER, E. T. 1994. Canadian Triassic ammonoid faunas. Geological Survey of Canada Bulletin, 467,1–663.
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  1. Hey everyone, I thought that I would talk about trilobite anatomy.  I have been using some complicated terms, and I want to make sure that we are all on the same page.  So please watch the movie and enjoy!

     

  2. A topic early last year in the Fossil Forum asked “What are your goals for 2015”. My response in that discussion was a desire to collect from the Duplin Formation in South Carolina to expand upon the species list within my Pliocene Project. Although I did not have the opportunity to bring those specific goals to fruition, I did add significantly to that list with unplanned collecting trips to two sites exposing the Golden Gate Member of the Tamiami Formation containing a number of species not found within the Pinecrest Member further north. However more so than any other unit that I sampled in 2015, was the unexpected opportunity to collect from several localities exposing the Lower Pleistocene (Gelasian) Caloosahatchee Formation. As I have previously reported the Caloosahatchee contains a mostly tropical fauna containing many endemic mollusks which lived within the flooded Everglades Basin following a 200,000 year sea level regression marking the end of the Pliocene Epoch.

    My previous collecting endeavors in the Caloosahatchee had been restricted to the western portion of the Everglades/Big Cypress region and the trip that I attended in January 2015 organized by the Conservancy of Southwest Florida followed that trend with a visit to a quarry in Charlotte County (Fig. 1). The mine contained massive spoil piles of shell rich material excavated years ago that had undergone heavy weathering. As a result the large well preserved gastropods which the Caloosahatchee is known for were lacking although the weathering did reveal many of the smaller species not commonly looked for by most collectors.

    blogentry-1906-0-22011700-1466113898_thumb.jpg blogentry-1906-0-56672200-1466113880_thumb.jpg blogentry-1906-0-08847500-1466115159_thumb.jpg

    Figure 1. Locality 1039. Charlotte County, Florida.

    Throughout last year I conversed with several forum members and messaging with Dozer Operator (Thanks Jonathan!) finally led to a collecting trip to the eastern half of the everglades. Unlike the incredibly hot trip with FossilDAWG and jehussey the previous week, Tropical Storm Erika was moving offshore of the Florida peninsula ensuring a wet but more bearable day in the field. Navigating heavy rain squalls with the use of Jonathan’s weather phone app, we were able to miss most of the precipitation and visited among others that day two sites exposing the Caloosahatchee Formation. The first in Martin County east of Lake Okeechobee contained primarily Caloosahatchee material with some overlying Middle Pleistocene Bermont Formation from which I was able to score examples of the larger mollusks that the Caloosahatchee is known for while Jonathan collected some interesting vertebrate material probably originating out of the Bermont (Fig. 2). The second stop further south in Palm Beach County contained equal amounts of Caloosahatchee and Bermont sediments (Fig. 3).

    blogentry-1906-0-12526200-1466113430_thumb.jpg blogentry-1906-0-13916100-1466113448_thumb.jpg blogentry-1906-0-37303200-1466114638_thumb.jpg

    Figure 2. Locality 1045. Martin County, Florida.

    blogentry-1906-0-36689300-1466113478_thumb.jpg blogentry-1906-0-28070900-1466114682_thumb.jpg blogentry-1906-0-35181300-1466114702_thumb.jpg

    Figure 3. Locality 499. Palm Beach County, Florida.

    blogentry-1906-0-04191300-1466112952_thumb.jpg blogentry-1906-0-15292400-1466112951_thumb.jpg blogentry-1906-0-10457900-1466112953_thumb.jpg blogentry-1906-0-94574900-1466112949_thumb.jpg blogentry-1906-0-07294100-1466112954_thumb.jpg

    Figure 4. Some gastropods from the Caloosahatchee Formation of South Florida.

    Both sites particularly the latter, demonstrate the difficulty in identifying fossils within the Florida Plio-Pleistocene. Each of the shell bearing units in South Florida contain endemic species found only within designated deposits, however as seen in my Tamiami Gallery a number of molluscan species survived into recent times as well as some which persisted past the Upper Pliocene but becoming extinct later prior to the Holocene. Adding to the confusion are non-peer reviewed works which have taxonomically split new species based upon the unit and/or geographical region placing much emphasis on slight phenotypic variation. In the list below, I have attempted to be as accurate as possible in assigning species that belong in the Caloosahatchee, however short of in-situ collection there could be species particularly those collected from locality 499 that could have originated from the Bermont Formation. In addition, the below list also is the first that I have produced using marine invertebrate taxonomy as presented by the World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) . This includes bivalve taxonomy proposed by Carter et. al., 2011 and gastropod taxonomy from numerous researchers. As shown in the list, not all of the gastropod families have been assigned to specific Orders and are waiting further study and DNA analysis. I will be applying the same classification to my other Plio-Pleistocene faunal lists as I update them in future posts.

    Caloosahatchee species list 040416.pdf

    References

    Joseph G. Carter, Cristian R. Altaba, Laurie C. Anderson, Rafael Araujo, Alexander S. Biakov, Arthur E. Bogan, David C. Campbell, Matthew Campbell, Chen Jin-hua, John C. W. Cope, Graciela Delvene, Henk H. Dijkstra, Fang Zong-jie, Ronald N. Gardner, Vera A. Gavrilova, Irina A. Goncharova, Peter J. Harries, Joseph H. Hartman, Michael Hautmann, Walter R. Hoeh, Jorgen Hylleberg, Jiang Bao-yu, Paul Johnston, Lisa Kirkendale, Karl Kleemann, Jens Koppka, Jiřź Kříž, Deusana Machado, Nikolaus Malchus, Ana Márquez-Aliaga, Jean-Pierre Masse, Christopher A. McRoberts, Peter U. Middelfart, Simon Mitchell, Lidiya A. Nevesskaja, Sacit Özer, John Pojeta Jr., Inga V. Polubotko, Jose Maria Pons, Sergey Popov, Teresa Sánchez, André F. Sartori, Robert W. Scott, Irina I. Sey, Javier H. Signorelli, Vladimir V. Silantiev, Peter W. Skelton, Thomas Steuber, J. Bruce Waterhouse, G. Lynn Wingard and Thomas Yancey. 2011. A Synoptical Classification of the Bivalvia (Mollusca). Paleontological Contributions (4):1-47. 2011

  3. Pondering on Dinosaurs

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    Welcome to the first entry of my dino blog! I figured for the first entry I should do something exciting and personal to me, so I'm doing a face-off between my two favourite dinosaurs: masiakasaurus and noasaurus! These two dinos are roughly the same size and are the two smallest abelisaurids found so far. Before we get into the match-up, lets look at some stats and figures for the reptiles themselves.

    First off we have masiakasaurus, a piscivorous dinosaur with long, outward jutting teeth designed to capture and make sure any fish caught can't escape. Its arms had to be strong in order for it to hold on to its wriggling and squirming prey, and it's fingers end with hooked claws that would latch onto any fish snatched from the riverbank. It was 5.6 feet long (2 metres) and definitely is a strong and deadly competitor.

    Now we have noasaurus, an abelisaurid that closely resembles the maniraptorans, for the killing claw on nova's hands was originally thought to be based on it's foot, like a raptor. Noasaurus was an active hunter and could reach blisteringly fast speeds, presumably using similar hunting techniques to deinonychus and velociraptor- going for the soft, fleshy part throat of the animal. This abelisaur was 7.9 feet long (2.6 metres) and will definitely prove more than a match for masiakasaurus.

    THE FIGHT:

    This fight would probably only happen if noasaurus' hunting grounds started to clash with the section of the river masiakasaurus hunts by. As rivers generate a large amount of noise, noasaurus would definitely gain the advantage as it snuck up on masiaka, who would be facing the river, searching for prey. Noasaurus' first move would presumably to lunge from behind onto masiakasaurus' neck, attempting to get a killing strike in with the claw on it's hand. This move would likely push them both into the river (dinosaurs are pretty dumb, so noasaurus wouldn't have planned for that to happen!) where masiakasaurus would gain the advantage. It's outward jutting teeth would have to be strong to hold staring and thrashing prey, but they just weren't suited for attacking other dinosaurs. The hooked talons on it's hands, however... As masiakasaurus lacks hunting and attacking instinct, it would probably throw some wild slashes at the lightly built noasaurus, who would be struggling to keep it's snout above the water. Masiakasaurus would probably have experience from falling in to it's hunting grounds, and so would be prepared to get out. And as masiakasaurus would escape the confines of the water, the blood and gashes from the battle would attract some other aspiring aquatic predators. The poor, drowning noasaurus would presumably be finished by a crocodile of some sort or, once it drowned, scavenged by some smaller, predatory fish. So, in the end... MASIAKASAURUS WINS!

  4. Micropaleontology blog

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    mohsenamini
    Latest Entry

    Please read this section before continue in this blog


    Currently this blog only contains my personal information on:


    1- micropaleontology of a section in Iran (Arak) which described here. (in website gallery only images+microfacies- complete refrence is in the excel file)
    2- some palynological works
    _______________________________________
    you probably fisrt should download the following:
    - Map of the area: http://wikisend.com/download/391330/Map-final.jpg
    - Excel file for the complete refrence(Farsi Refrence is more complete):
    http://wikisend.com/download/421198/Microfacies_english.xlsx,
    http://wikisend.com/download/760688/Microfacies_Farsi.xlsx
    Notice that:
    - pictures of thin sections are only samples and sure you can't get much information from there. in proper time i will put better images.
    - whole content is only for educational purposes and also mistakes happens all the times :D
    - Contents might get updated anytime

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    Some Background: I was already somewhat familiar with the idea that one had to have a license to collect certain fossils. As a child, I'd spent enough summer days at Kelly Rock Springs to find the occasional 'other fossil' in addition to the plethora of shark teeth usually found. These other fossils would get enjoyed for the afternoon and then left behind. I never found anything particularly impressive, I needed glasses but couldn't be bothered to wear them around water and thus really couldn't see anything. One day though, a friend of mine found a fantastic large tooth, mastodon or mammoth. Watching him relinquish that tooth to an adult collector with the proper license reinforced the necessity of having the appropriate licensing. Of course, at that time, I would have needed a parent to sign me up and they weren't overly interested. I couldn't blame them, they were busy.


    Licensing and Legalities: I'm a chicken. I can't help but feel I should get that out of the way first. I spend hours reading before trying pretty much anything. The first thing I searched for was where to apply for a license to collect vertebrate fossils. I sent in my application and a short two weeks later received back my fossil collecting license. Here in Florida, the license is just for vertebrate fossils collected on state land. Collecting of human artifacts is prohibited. Shark teeth are thus far excluded from any licensing requirements. The license carries with it the obligation to report back all findings before renewing the license at the end of the year. Sixty days from the date of reporting, the fossil ownership reverts to me if the state decides they don't need the fossil.


    Deciding where to hunt: This has been a tougher question. I will be taking my 5 year old daughter with me and feel uncomfortable taking her to some of the better fossil locations. Most of the good locations here in the state of Florida are in freshwater rivers which also happen to be the location of gators. That pretty much leaves us with beach collecting. If we join a club, perhaps one of the mine field trips which allow children. In the meantime, another option has availed itself.


    Fossil hunting from the comfort of home: I'm trying not to make a nuisance of myself in the forums. I read until I think my brain is as full as it can get and then take a break. I try not to respond as I don't yet have anything of value to add to the conversation. Thanks to this forum, I realized that there aren't just regular sized fossils out there. There are tiny fossils too. In a fantastic stroke of luck, I realized that the micro-fossils I liked the best are from my home state. Better yet, the forum member collecting this material is from my hometown. How's that for convenience?


    Starting out with tiny fossils: It was really difficult to resist just digging right into the bag and looking for fossils. I decided that this time I would start out organized. I ordered gem jars and tiny bags from a jewelry supply. I picked up some drug store magnifying glasses and decided to start sorting. Right away, I determined that the drug store magnifying glasses were rubbish. They made things larger, but, still blurry. I pity anyone who tries to read a newspaper with the brand I purchased. At the moment, I am picking out anything that looks sort of biological and then using my Epson V300 scanner to see if anything I've side-lined is actually a fossil. I will have to sort it all again as soon as I have a better way to view these tiny fossils.


    Imaging and Identifying: I already own a DSLR, an older Canon Rebel. Unfortunately, I still only own the kit lens. As much as I would love to justify a macro lens, I think that I will start out with a Vivitar close-up lens kit. I'm hoping that with bright enough lighting I will be able to create images decent enough for identifying fossils easily. I would really like a microscope, but, the wide range of options in microscopes has left me undecided. So far, my best images have come from the Epson scanner. I'm hoping that the Vivitar lenses and better lighting will be enough to make the Canon equal to the task. I've already found quite a few neat little fossils, but, I know that my images of those fossils aren't good enough for more than loose identification.


    In Conclusion: I'm twenty days into the fossil collecting hobby. I guess I shouldn't feel too bad that I don't have much of this figured out yet. I'm sure that most of this blog won't be particularly helpful to anyone. I'm mostly posting this so that a couple years from now when something hasn't worked out and I'm frustrated with the hobby I can look back and see that I'm a bit less of a dummy than I was when I started. <--- Yes, this run-on sentence is unforgivable, but, I am sick yet again and my 100+ fever is making me apathetic about grammar.







  5. Pterodactyl's Blog

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    Today I went fossil hunting down to Denton, Texas. The weather was fairly nice with some wind. The outcome were some turrilite fragments, a ton of exogyra arietina (for selling), an echinoid, some Cetaceous/Jurassic sea floor, brachiopods and a clam.
    Echinoid
    Brachiopods
    Some of many Exogyra Arietina

    Turrilite

    Cretaceous or Jurassic sea floor blogentry-20385-0-08482500-1453681720_thumb.jpg

  6. TomKoss' Blog

    Well back online and on the site again. Due to PC issues and crazy holiday shifts at work was away for about a month and half. figured I'd add a few pics of stuff gathered last few months.

  7. My days on the Leedsichthys project at the Peterborough Museum.

    As a volunteer in the geology department its like a dream come true.

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    Day 1 and 2: After being introduced and under the expert guidance of Nigel Larkin who is a natural sciences conservator specialising in the excavation, preparation conservation, curation, storage and display of geological, paleontological, archaeological and osteological specimens. We were shown techniques in how to stabilise the base of various sized clay matrixes that hold bones from the Leedsichthys that where originally found around 10 years ago. With Plaster of Paris jackets applied at the dig site when found and in order to keep the bones in place for future research.

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    And now the Peterborough Museum with funding is in a position to bring these pieces out of storage and continue to work on them in the hope of piecing them together at a later date.

    My first two days on the project consisted in reducing the weight of a large clay matrix slab by a couple of inches in order to have sufficient room to apply a fair sized thickness of plaster of paris which would, in turn help to increase stability. Just to help the stability process we also added an acetone / paraloid mix in various strengths into the clay cracks which when dry also aided as a bonding agent for our first layer of plaster of paris.

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    Top tip for mixing paraloid / acetone mix: Tie your paraloid beads into a small piece of muslin and suspend in jam jar while ###### the lid on this helps with dissolving process of the beads.

    So what you can actually see here is the reverse side of the find (the base) with the bones being held in place by the previous dig site jacket. When we are satisfied that the base is secure after our layers of plaster of paris and muslin we will then flip it over to take the old top jacket off to expose the bones in readiness for prepping them out of the clay matrix.

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    Layering the plaster of paris was like icing a cake using various sized knives in order to give it a smooth finish. You had to work it a reasonable steady pace as the mixture set very quickly also if possible not to let the new mixture touch the old top layer plaster jacket as this would hamper removing the top jacket.

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    There are several pieces of clay matrix slabs so we will perform this prepping technique to all of them.

    Day 3: Back in the prepping laboratory at the Peterborough Museum to help finish off the plaster base on the largest clay matrix slab.

    After a good clean up after us around the Lab (plaster of paris is a very messy business). It was decided to retrieve two larger jacketed slabs out of storage in order to look at them further and to assess our plan of action.

    Now these slabs where quite heavy with added weight from the made to measure wooden palate structures underneath them that Nigel had made to increase stability so it was all hands on deck to move them into position and onto our prepping table. We have been taking photos as often as possible with each and every step of the way with this project and making notes of any written marks that may have been applied to the jackets at the dig site. More photos were taking of the cast before we decided to take the top cast off to expose clay matrix with the bones encased within.

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    There were lots of boney elements intertwined with the clay with no formal identity as such to what we are looking at as yet with this particular slab. So again under the guidance of Nigel Larkin we tentatevly removed some small fragments of wood with tweezers and scalpels that had adhered themselves to the bone and clay.

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    Nigel had outlined in precise detail how best to start the cleaning process using some acetone and air abrasives on the bones and how to remove foam material that is connected with the original plaster the cast when jacketed at the dig site. This will enable us to reapply fresh plaster of paris to enhance the stabilizing process as we work on and around the clay matrix. To which hopefully I’ll be taking part in on my next visit to the museum.


    Day : 4 ( 13/10/2015)…Back at the Museum for a catch up with other volunteers to see what stage we are at and to learn any new techniques that have been applied for the restoration of the Leedsichthys.

    With PPE applied i.e. face masks and gloves we started to remove the old foam and any old overlapping plastered muslin. Also with the aid of an extraction unit to catch any airborne dust particles from the foam as we used our scalpels.

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    When satisfied that a section of the outer clay was exposed with as much foam and debris removed as possible. It was then decided to add a 15 per cent acetone paraloid solution to the clay not only to help strengthen it but by also to act as an adhere for the plaster of paris to stick to.

    blogentry-13364-0-34342800-1447109450_thumb.jpg


    With a combination of plaster of paris and muslin we worked our way around the outer edge of the clay slab applying the techniques I’ve just discussed.

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    That was me done for the day looking forward to my return visit.

    Day 5 : 15/10/2015..I was lucky enough to help out at the Museum’s storage facility today to help stabilise a large clay slab with lots of Leedsichthys bone elemnets attached to it. This process did indeed take quite a bit of Plaster of paris and muslin to fill cavities that are around the base of the slab. But the work is vitally important as the clay is quite thin in places so we need a strong base in order to work some of the plaster of paris up the sides to support any overhanging clay matrix.

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    We estimate this should take at least two days to complete if I’m fortunate enough to resume with this I’ll keep you updated on how it’s going.

    Day 6: 10/11/2015

    If I apply the phrase “Absence makes the heart grow fonder “can I use this for today’s visit to the museum…erm…yes...definitely.
    Especially as we had the pleasure of meeting Professor Jeff Liston who is a world expert when it comes to working with the Leedsichthys problematicus. Just before Jeff briefed us on what duties we would be carrying out today he dropped in the classic line ( jaw dropping time ) “ As you know we are working on the most complete Leedsichthys problematicus…in the World. “

    blogentry-13364-0-79114700-1447164704_thumb.jpg

    Heres a you tube clip about Jeff Liston working on a



    We gathered our senses and composure to continue tentativily working away at various spots with acetone. To clean away old paraloid solution that had been applied at the dig site to reveal more tell-tale bone.

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    Also the piece we were working onto today has been identified as one of the head plates where we have now exposed the rostrum as well.

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    All in all it was another therapeutic few hours enjoyed by all the volunteers on this project.

    Day 7: 17/11/2015

    Back in the museum for a few hours to catch up with other volunteers on the project and to summarize on what stage we are at. Also to learn any new techniques needed as more and more bone is revealed.

    Nigel Larkin had returned for the day to see how we were getting on and to further oversee the practices he had taught us on the first week of the project. We all feel quite comfortable in our new found prepping skills. But even more so with the presence of Nigel as he seems to exude some sort of air of confidence.

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    For example on my last visit I was removing some old paraloid from a section of bone by gently brushing some acetone over the bone then using a sharpened wooden spatchuler to remove the residue. But I found the residue congealing faster than I could remove it so Nigel showed us how to confidently remove the residue with sharp scalpels with the blade flush and flat to the bone going with the grain. In order remove the sticky residue then gentle wipe over with Lint free paper which certainly made all the difference to bring out all the hidden contours of the bone and its beautiful brown colouration.

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    Jeff Liston was also present busying himself with further research on identifying the bones as they become more apparent. Jeff had identified one of the larger slabs as a Right Hyomandibular which helped work on to remove any lose clay form the edges in order to strengthen the cracked but stable clay edges for consolidating. We noted on the wooden pallet left side and right side then marked up some zip lock bags ( Left side and Right side ) to put loose clay matrix in for further studies i.e. Macro-Palaeontology. Any recognisable bone fragments that we encountered we put on the top of the slab for consolidation at a later date.

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    That’s me done for today…speak soon.

    …..Where was I, oh yes I remember now, working on the Leedsichthys project with a team of volunteers and some experts in this field, how could one possibly forget.

    The chilli morning air is no bother when focused.

    It certainly does seem a long time since I was in the prepping room of the Peterborough Museum. But as I’m sure you are aware especially the musuem voulnteers amongst us. Work and family life always take first place, but when you get amongst the fossils again everything ticks along and fall into place nicely.

    There is still plenty of work to do as you can imagine when working on a specimen labelled as the World’s Biggest Fish. So as uaual we tentatively brushed over the old Paraloid that was used at the dig site to stabilize the finds. Armed with an array of small brushes and sharpened wooden picks as not to scratch the bone.

    Very satisfying and therapeutic few hours with my work colleagues and especially nice to catch up with Jeff Liston and ask when his forthcoming book about the Leeds brothers will materialise.


    Speak again soon.

    Darren.

    You too can follow is work on the links below if you like:

    On Twitter: BigJurassicFish
    On Facebook: BigJurassicFish
  8. Eastern NC Trip Reports

    To date, I have found a few hundred shark teeth of assorted species and condition, around 100 belemnites and then various other items while screening for fossils at the GMR. This will be my first "trip report" blog on finds from all previous trips (June 2015-October 2015). These images are just the "best" finds within the things I've found at GMR to kick start the reporting I hope to do more timely and detailed with individual trip analysis. There will be several items/categories I am missing and will most likely mention in the future, especially the random "modern junk" I've come across in this creek.

    Goblin Shark teeth? I find A LOT of these, but most are either in half vertically or missing one side of the root.

    GMR Belemnites

    Belemnites everywhere! I have actually started to control myself on these amber sticks glistening amidst the stream, I'm trying not to take more than I can look at!

    GMR Blog 12 Tympanic Bulla

    I believe this is tympanic bulla?

    GMR Blog  07

    I'm not sure why, but I really like these fish teeth so I get pretty excited each time I run across some.

    GMR Blog 04 Mouth Plates

    The few "larger" teeth I have found so far, even though it's in pretty poor condition, the largest one there had me stoked for days as it was my first large find. I am pretty sure my co workers wanted to stab me with it after the first day of trying to show everyone!

    Not sure what these are, wonder if they are possibly vertebrae? I find a lot of rusted looking flat rocks like this varying in sizes.

    GMR Blog 10 Bones P 1

    And then some random finds and bones (I'm pretty sure one was a chicken bone from a Sunday picnic :P). I'm always very happy with my trips to GMR, even if I went for an hour after work one evening, there is always a neat little find that makes it worth while! The scene can be quite relaxing if you have time to walk a bit into the stream, but the smell always keeps you from forgetting what you are in and not to put your hands near your mouth! :)

  9. BRobinson7's Blog

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    I'm looking to plan a trip for shark teeth hunting possibly in Summerville, SC. Im currently in Pender County, NC, so Green Mile Run isnt out of the question. Any suggestions, locations or people who want to group up? Haven't had too much experience, but i've leant its the company that matters over what you find.

  10. The Community Post

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    Tomorrow I will visit Mazon Creek area! I am so pumped.

  11. TyrannosaurusRex's Facts

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    An enormous bipedal dinosaur believed to be able to run up to 25 mph. Sue was the largest specimen ever found measuring 40 feet long and standing 13 feet tall. She was 28 years old when she died of unknown causes possibly an injury to her leg causing her to be unable to hunt her normal prey. Tyrannosaur weighed about 9 tons. While not as long as some of the other carnivores of its time Tyrannosaurus was a dangerous beast although some believed it to be a scavenger. They lived in North America from the Dakotas to New Mexico.

    It was believed to have had feathers as a chick

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    A braincase of an adult specimen. It had a large section in its brain devoted to strategy

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    The growth rate of an average Tyrannosaurus Rex

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    Adult skull and the skull of an 11 year old juvenile

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    A track believed to be Tyrannosaurus

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  12. PaleoWilliam's Blog

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    I went to Post Oak Creek and found a lot of teeth. The water was freezing and my feet were numb. I recommend going there if you live in Texas. Summer or Spring would be the best time to go. For me the water levels were high but I used a sifter and found some cool things.The results were 20 teeth and a lot of shells.

  13. Stocksdale's Blog

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    Alethopteris are quite common at Saint Clair location. But apparently there are at least 6 different species.

    These are all from "Fossil Plants from the Anthracite Coal Fields of Eastern Pennsylvania."

    A zip file that contains the PDF can be downloaded from http://www.dcnr.state.pa.us.

    Here's a direct link.http://www.dcnr.stat...dcnr_016425.zip

    Alethopteris ambigua

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    Alethopteris decurrens

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    Alethopteris friedelii

    blogentry-10955-0-37056100-1421676931.jpgblogentry-10955-0-57187600-1421676933.jpg

    Alethopteris lonchitica

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    Alethopteris serlii

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    Alethopteris sullivantii

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  14. Sigmund Freud theorized that the act of collecting ties back to the time of our toilet training. Freud suggested that the loss of control and what went down the toilet was a traumatic occurrence to us human and thus in our subconscious we develop the desire to collect things as a mean to try to gain back not only control but “possessions” of that which were lost so many years ago.......

    O.K. if I tried to rephrase what I just shared in a non-academic language is that we human collect because of the trauma we faced when we couldn’t control and keep our poo poo when we were toddlers - man that sounds pretty bizarre (in a funny and entertaining way - no disrespect to Mr. Freud) while at the same time stirred my brain into thinking really deep about the purpose, the psychology and even the philosophy behind our beloved hobbies of collecting, whether they be fossils, minerals, books, etc.

    Thus in this blog, I will attempt to share my thought and theories that are my own take on this particular subject. Though I will have to say in advance before you read that this is in no way an attempt to be academic in nature - just pure ramblings for the purpose of my own amusement and if it turns out to be enlightening then all the better! So here it goes:

    **switching on psychological rambling mode**

    My perspective and belief is that collecting is an act that is stemmed from our human nature’s instinct that reacts towards “Fear” and “Uncertainty”, and there are quite several motives and psychology behind collecting that I believe support this notion:

    Fear of Mortality

    A collector collects due to a deep rooted fear of mortality and whether if you will be remembered or leave legacy after you have passed away. We can observe collectors of this type who often will go on to donate collections to public institutions or create museums to exhibit their collections. We as human (at least I believe most of us are anyway) desire to be remembered in some ways and thus our collection or what we have contributed will leave a mark in history and in essence immortalize us with our legacy which is our collections.

    Fear of Being Alone

    Some collectors start collecting as a mean to seek company of like-minded individuals who share similar passions or to experience acceptance as be part of a unique society, group and culture; for we human are social animals that instinctively seek group safety and social belongings or we become lost and terrified. This motive therefore, is also based on our fear instinct that has been implanted in our psyche.

    Fear of Non-Existence

    I think it’s probably sensible to assume that we all collect in order to know more about ourselves or to remind us of who we are, our interests, our loves, our passions and our nostalgic pasts. Thus the motive of collecting from this perspective is related to our fear instinct. For to remind of ourselves is to reinforce ourselves that we exist while at the same time reminding us of moments of happiness that make us feel alive - and those moments for collectors are the times we interact with and make ourselves surrounded by the objects of our obsessions. In addition we could say that, the act of building a collection creates a type of blueprint of our inner psyche and of a person’s life through the objects the collector acquired and cherished - the experiences the collector went through in his life. Therefore, the act of collecting is the act of painting a portrait of our life stories and our souls, through objects that speak about our love and fascinations. It reinforces our identity, our memories and our existence.

    Fear of Uncertainty & Chaos

    Collecting as a mean to create meaning to an otherwise seemingly chaotic world. We as collectors collect by gathering groups of objects that form cohesiveness or relationship between the pieces or to tell a certain story behind those naturally unrelated pieces and thereby forming meaning to the collection. Some collectors form collection in response to certain problems or sense of wonder of the chaos presented in front, and by building a collection the collector is able to tackle that problem. For example, a collector might face the question of “How can I represent the diversity of the Eocene mega fauna of North America?” (problem / chaos) and thus the collector embarks on a collecting quest to gather specimens that would build a complete collection of Eocene North American mega fauna specimens collection (solution / order). The act of collecting creates a collection that in essence, becomes the solution to the collectors dilemma. This, I would also say that is part of our deep rooted human psyche of fear of chaos and the unknown, and thus our instinct is to try to limit the chaos by creating orders (or illusions of order) to an otherwise chaotic world (in our perception at least) much in the same ways as how the early humans banded together, formed groups and created cultures or rituals to face the world’s problems or threats. Collectors on the other hands, tackle the chaos by creating order in the collection and in so doing the collector gains a semblance of power and control over disorganization and chaos.

    Fear of the Absence of Aliveness

    Collecting is without a doubt, a pleasurable pursuit for collector, whereas an audiophile takes pleasure in listening to music, food connoisseur indulges in the enjoyment food & wine, or art aficionado indulge in art appreciation and possession. We collectors induce our senses of aesthetics and pleasure from acquiring and creating collections of objects in order to feel enjoyment. In a way, this could be viewed as related to our fear instinct because we fear to not being able to feel the pleasurable pursuits in life. For we human feel alive when we experience such pleasures, whether the pleasures be from the indulgence of consumable & wearable objects or simply to possess and be surrounded by the things that give us joy like our collections.

    Fear of Powerlessness

    Collecting can be viewed as an act that I think came from our hunting instinct - to explore our sense of wonder of the unknown, to challenge the goals of acquisitions of hard-to-find objects; this in my view is in essence “the thrill of the hunt”. This particular collecting mindset is also based on our response to our fear instinct for when we hunt, we transform ourselves from being powerless prey to being powerful hunter and dominators - thus hunting (or in essence collecting) is an act to overcome our fear instinct while the “hunting” and while at the same time the journey of the hunt makes us feel alive. Also, when thinking about this motive I think it makes sense as we tend to see many collectors tend to be drawn to fossils of creatures of great power and ferocity or majestic beauty. For some collectors to possess such specimens make the collectors feel the power of those long dead creatures probably in similar manners in how hunters have trophies of their hunt to show their skills as hunters to overcome such beasts.

    Now don’t these reasons and psychology of collecting sound much more appealing than Sigmund Freud’s potty training explanation? But, before some may think that “Collecting = Fear” may seem like a degrading notion at first glance, I present to you my next theory:

    **switching on philosophical rambling mode**

    Fear of Being just another Animal - Collecting to Transcend Humanity

    Despite our instinctual fear that drives us to collect, the act of collecting is also an act of human transcendence and transformation. Some collect objects of power to symbolize the attaining of that power or the conquering of such powerful force that ultimately makes us feel more powerful than who we are without the collection. An act of collecting transform us into more powerful being (whether physically, socially, economically or spiritually): a person with no social distinction or significance can become conservators, scholars and even admired icons of historical significance. Collecting can transform the powerless into the powerful, the ignorant into a scholar, a hoarder into a curator and in many cases, turning common man into sage.

    Our fear of mortality, uncertainty and instability of our universe makes us human so special and able to achieve our transcendence from mere creatures of survival instinct into creators, innovators, artists, philosophers or sages. Thus it is the shadow that allows us to appreciate the light; the fear of death that makes us cherish the beauty of life; the brutality of our darkest side that gives rise to the reactionary opposites that make us saints, protectors and self-less beings capable of great courage and heroism.

    Therefore, even if the psychology of collecting comes down to “Our Fear of Mortality” (death with no legacy or inability to feel “alive”), “Our Fear of Non-Existence” (due to the lack of social presence, acceptance or without a group to belong); that very fear creates motives for us to have “Desire for Transcendence” into something more than what we are. Thus I would make the case that the act of collecting is both instinctual (as a reaction to our deep rooted fear of mortality & physical existence) and spiritual (as a path [and an enjoyable one!] towards transcendence of the human existence).

    **switching off philosophical rambling mode**

    My goodness after I just wrote all that, I just had an idea that the next time, when I meet people who think my collecting and obsession with eclectic objects are weird, bizarre or non-sensual, I can start quoting my philosophical ramblings that my collecting hobby allows me to transcend spiritually and start going into Zen mode - that’s should be entertaining to say the least, lol. Who would have thought our hobbies could be so spiritually stimulating.

    Anyway that’s all for my rambling for today. Hope you enjoy the blog entry :)

  15. My Blog

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    Hello everyone!

    I thought i'd just make the one blog for pretty much everything that i find or want to post, rather than different blogs for different types of specimens, as i'm not a particularly busy hunter. If ever i go on a fossil hunting trip, or uncover a fossil in my back garden, then i will probably post pictures on here, as well as anything else i feel you should know! Thanks for taking your time to read this utterly boring introductory post thing, and i hope to post soon!

    Laters! ;)

  16. Dear Fossil Forum members!

    This report deals with ammonoids from the former zone of Protrachyceras archelaus, which is our present Longobardian within the Ladinian stage of the marine Triassic timescale.

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    Fig.1

    A beautiful view of the surging “rock waves” of the incoming tectonic thrust sheets. The valley between the two Mountains in the middle of the picture marks the tectonic border between the mainly Triassic Hallstatt Unit and the Tirolikum Unit of the Totengebirgs nappe (in the background).

    History

    Since the beginning of the geological research within the Northern Calcareous Alps of Austria in the middle of the 19th century, about 500 species of Triassic ammonoids have been described in great Monographs by Mojsisovics, Hauer, Diener and other early authors. The ammonoids described therein came from upper Anisian to uppermost Norian aged parts of the Hallstatt limestone in Austria.

    Only in the lower to middle Ladinian period, a gap exists in the rich ammonoid record of these early researchers.

    This gap was explained by them as an interruption of sedimentation in the Ladinian time or tectonically reduced Ladinian strata during the genesis of the Alps.

    During these early days no one thought of a collecting gap because Ladinian ammonoid faunae were well described and known from several localities in the Southern Alps and the Bakony Mountains in Hungary.

    In 1882 Mojsisovics pictured ammonoids of Anisian and Ladinian age in his monographic work “Die Cephalopoden der mediterranen Triasprovinz”.

    The locations mentioned therein reach from the upper Anisian Schreyeralm limestone here in Austria to several Ladinian locations of the former Austrian provinces Südtirol, Lombardy and the kingdom of Hungary, which were also part of the former Austrian-Hungarian Monarchy at this time. Included in this work were also Scythian and Anisian ammonoids from Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina.

    blogentry-2660-0-36657800-1392409127.jpg

    Fig.2 Frontpage of Mojsisovics second great monograph from the year 1882.

    The detailed accurate descriptions and illustrations provided by Mojsisovics are unquestionably the greatest contribution by a single author towards appreciating the astonishing beauty and variety of Triassic ammonoids” (cit. E. T. TOZER).

    Therefore every recent Triassic ammonoid researcher includes these old works in the standard literature of Triassic ammonoids. These old works were so to speak, a cornerstone for building the marine middle and upper Triassic timescale of our days.

    Unfortunately the early stratigraphic scales of Mojsisovics had some mistakes. Originally the stratigraphic position of the “Norian” stage was set by him below the Carnian.

    He used the term Norian for the time frame we today call Ladinian. Mojs. thought that most parts of today’s real Norian Hallstatt limestone of Austria were of the same age as real Ladinian strata in the Southern Alps. Some misinterpret location data, i.e. the wrong assumed position of the fineclastic Zlambach marls as base of the Hallstatt limestone led him to this wrong assumption.

    It was the Austrian geologist Alexander Bittner, a contemporary of Mojsisovics, who introduced the term Ladinian into literature by recognizing the false assumptions of Mojsisovics. The name Ladinian was chosen by Bittner after the Ladinian folk of the Southern Alps/Dolomites. At this time this area was also part of the Austrian-Hungarian monarchy with its capital Vienna and it’s so called “Vienna school” of the palaeontology institutions there.

    Probably this “miss take” of Mojsisovics led to some changed ammonoid zones within the Norian timescale, which last into the 20th century.

    It was the merit of the Canadian Triassic worker E.T. Tozer to correct this long lasting error by establish his own North American Triassic timescale, based only on North American, mainly Canadian Triassic ammonoid locations.

    The pelagic (deeper marine) Triassic sedimentation in Austria starts with the uppermost Anisian Flexo-Ptychites beds/lenses of the Schreyeralm limestone. This is also the base of the Hallstatt formation. The next frequent ammonoid lenses/layers occur within uppermost Ladinian/lower Carnian strata in this formation. The lower to middle Ladinian time frame in between was not well documented with ammonoids by the early researchers of the 19th century. At some historical locations the lower Ladinian part is/was given but was not really recognised by them.

    Later, modern researchers used microfossils to determine the placement of large parts of the grey to violet limestone in the Hallstatt formation into the Ladinian. Within the 20th century also scarce ammonoids were mentioned from these middle Ladinian strata.

    blogentry-2660-0-45365900-1392401945.jpg

    Fig.3 Anisian Schreieralm limestone with cross sections of Flexoptychites sp.

    blogentry-2660-0-79443500-1392401397.jpg

    Fig.4 Monophyllites sphaerophyllus (HAUER) from the Schreieralm limestone

    In general, ammonoid locations are not frequently known within the Ladinian part of the Hallstatt limestone.

    The most common fossils are Crinoid stem parts, Bivalves and Conodonts.

    The limestone facies consists of red to grey, sometimes yellowish to grey coloured limestone which is locally interbedded with marls.

    Also strongly condensed successions are common there and fossils also do not occur in continuous layers.

    Comparable Ladinian ammonoid faunas are also well known from similar Hallstatt type limestone in Greece and Italy. They show similar ammonoid faunae of Ladinian to Carnian age.

    In the Tethys realm the whole Ladinium is split into two subdivisions today.

    Upper Ladinian = Longobardian,

    Lower Ladinian = Fassanian,

    The historical zone ammonite of the Longobardian is Protrachyceras archelaus (LAUBE).

    blogentry-2660-0-55213000-1392401415.jpg

    Fig.5

    Protrachyceras archelaus (LAUBE), in MOJSISOVICS “Die Cephalopoden der mediterranen Triasprovinz“ Wien 1882

    Tafel XXXL, Fig. 1,

    But Protrachyceras archelaus LAUBE do occur within a longer time span and is therefore not perfect for stratigraphic aims. The old archelaus zone of the Ladinian was therefore changed into several Longobardian and Fassanian ammonoid zones of today.

    Within the Tethys realm the Longobardian is split into the ammonoid zones of:

    Daxatina canadensis

    Frankites regoledanus

    Protrachyceras longobardicum

    The Fassanian is split to the ammonoid zones of:

    Eoprotrachyceras gredleri

    Protrachyceras margaritosum

    Eoprotrachyceras curionii

    The ammonoids shown in this report come from a condensed fossil bed roughly inserted to the turquoise marked ammonoid zones of the timescale below.

    blogentry-2660-0-84156700-1392409215.jpg

    Historical Ladinian locations

    The condensed lower Carnian fossil lenses on the famous historical Feuerkogel show almost all a portion of the upper Ladinian at their base. This is also visible at other Lower Carnian locations within the Hallstatt limestone.

    During the last years Proarcestes sp. from a new location are sometimes shown for sale in the internet. They are sometimes identified as Arcestes sp. from Norian strata. But it is Proarcestes, therefore its Norian age is definitely wrong.

    I visited this new locality a few years ago. All locations there are of Ladinian age which is evidenced by Proarcestes cf. subtridentinus, Anolcites sp. and Epigymnites sp. This fauna is maybe slightly younger than the fauna shown later here in this report.

    blogentry-2660-0-38160400-1392401441.jpg

    Fig.6 Some Epigymnites arthaberi (MOJS.) and Epigymnites moelleri (MOJS.) from the above mentioned location

    The new location

    Several years ago a friend and I were lucky to find a hitherto unknown middle Ladinian ammonoid location during a prospecting trip. At this location the normal limestone succession is penetrated by several fractures and tectonic influence across the normal layer direction is also visible there. The fossil layer itself, in which ammonoids were frequent, consists of a very strong condensed upper part of lower Longobardian age, indicated by Protrachyceras longobardicum (MOJS.), and a lower part of a slightly older age indicated by scarce last descendants of Ptychites cf. pauli MOJS. which show deeply incised second and third lateral saddles similar Aristoptychites or Arctoptychites.

    Therefore the location is ranged by me to the transition of the ammonoid zones of Protrachyceras longobardicum and the underlying Eoprotrachyceras gredleri zone. Outside of the Tethys realm this is roughly comparable to the zones of Meginoceras meginae MC LEARN and Tuchodiceras poseidon (TOZER) of the North American timescale. Both zones are known from the Triassic of British Columbia in Canada too. Tozer, 1994, wrote that flat forms of Protrachyceras sikianum MC LEARN are comparable with Protrachyceras longobardicum (MOJS.) and the thicker morphs of Pt. sikianum MC LEARN with Pt. archelaus (LAUBE).

    blogentry-2660-0-99674500-1392401455.jpg

    Fig.7

    View of the lower, sometimes more greyish limestone part of the fossil layer. The chisel points to a Sturia cf. semiarata MOJS.

    The furrows on the limestone block have their origin in the strong condensation of this limestone. One can recognize by this feature the underlying part of a condensed limestone (fossil) layer.

    blogentry-2660-0-89521100-1392401469.jpg

    Fig.8

    In contrast to the above shown picture, a view of the underside of the overlaying layer where craters/hollows are visible. These two features can be used for recognizing up and downside in strongly condensed limestone. This feature is independent from the Triassic age of the rock and occurs in condensed limestone of Jurassic age too.

    The right hanging limestone block contains the fossil layer.

    blogentry-2660-0-38766800-1392401489.jpg

    Fig.9

    Protrachyceras longobardicum (MOJS). in situ. View from the underside. The upper half of the ammonoid was totally dissolved due to the extreme condensation of the uppermost limestone layer at this location.

    In this location P. archelaus occurs very scarcely. It is no good indicator for stratigraphic aims here at all.

    A normal collector can use the following features to insert ammonoids into the Ladinian timescale.

    1. The frequent occurrence of Proarcestes sp. with a wavy end body chamber is a sign for Ladinian age.

    1. All forms of Sturia sp. are restricted to the late Anisian and Ladinian.

    1. The occurrence of real Ladinian Protrachyceras MOJS.

    The following picture will show you the main differences between Protrachyceras, Trachyceras and Neoprotrachyceras.

    blogentry-2660-0-90756000-1392403507.png

    Fig.10

    In contrast to Trachyceras the venter furrow of real Protrachyceras MOJS. is bordered by nodes which show a single point per node. Protrachyceras are restricted to the Ladinian.

    Real Trachyceras show “broader” nodes with two or three points a node bordering the venter furrow. Trachyceras is frequent in the Lower Carnian (Julian)

    The genus Neoprotrachyceras KRYSTYN looks similar toTrachyceras but shows also just one point per node, sometimes changing up to two points per node within maturity. Neoprotrachyceras is restricted to the uppermost Lower Carnian and lowermost Upper Carnian (e.g. the genus Spirogmoceras SILBERLING in the Dilleri Zone of the North American Tuvalian)

    For a newbie collector it is difficult to find some fossils in the Hallstatt limestone at all. To place them into the right ammonoid zone is sometimes the easier part of the exercise.

    blogentry-2660-0-54203100-1392401520.jpg

    Fig.11

    A weathered cross section of Proarcestes sp., visible at the limestone wall. Notice the bleached limestone surface in contrast to the colour of the fresh rock.

    blogentry-2660-0-92858800-1392401553.jpg

    Fig.12

    Talus block with visible cross sections of ammonoids and orthocone nautiloids

    Natural picture size is 20cm. The edges of the fossils are deeply weathered in. This can be a sign that the fossils will probably split out well.

    Small idiomorphic Biotite crystals up to one mm in size, fine Feldspar crystals and thin greenish tuffitic crusts around some ammonoids and limestone clasts indicate a distant simultaneous volcanic event, adjacent to the palaeo Hallstatt realm. This is the very first observation of volcanic fallout/washout within the Hallstatt limestone column.

    Within other tectonic nappes in the Northern and Southern Calcareous Alps (Dolomites) volcanic (Tuffitic) ash layers are a frequent feature in Ladinian time. In the adjacent Tirolic nappe some volcanic/tuffitic events are evidenced near the base of the archelaus zone.

    The middle Ladinian fauna listed below was found at this location.

    Ammonoidea

    cf. Beyrichites sp.

    Eupinacoceras cf. damesi (MOJSISOVICS).

    Epigymnites cf. ecki (MOJS.)

    Epigymnites cf. breunneri (HAUER)

    Epigymnites arthaberi (MOJS.)

    Gymnites raphaelis TOMMASI

    Megaphyllites obolus MOJS.

    Monophyllites wengensis (KLIPSTEIN)

    cf. Silenticeras sp.

    Sturia cf. sansovinii MOJS.

    Sturia semiarata MOJS.

    Proarcestes ombonii TOMMASI

    Proarcestes subtridentinus MOJS.

    Proarcestes .sp.

    Procladiscites sp.

    Protrachyceras archelaus (LAUBE)

    Protrachyceras longobardicum MOJS.

    Protrachyceras sp.

    Ptychites cf. pauli MOJS.

    Ptychites cf. plusiae RENZ

    Michelinoceras sp.

    Atractites sp.

    Syringoceras cf. longobardicus

    Nautilus div. sp.

    Bivalves

    Daonella sp.

    Peribositra sp.

    Brachiopoda:

    Discinisca sp.

    Austriellula dilatata (SUESS)

    Important ammonoid species of the archelaus zone

    A beautiful, conspicuous faunal element of the archelaus zone is Protrachyceras longobardicum MOJS. the zone ammonoid of the Langobardicum Zone

    This species shows its maximum roughly in the lower middle of the former archelaus zone and can be used well for stratigraphic aims. As mentioned earlier in this report compressed variants of Protrachyceras sikanianum MC LEARN are comparable to Pt. longobardicum MOJS. The thicker variants of Pt. sikanianum rather resemble Pt. archelaus LAUBE.

    blogentry-2660-0-07426300-1392401662.jpg

    Fig. 13 Protachyceras longobardicum MOJS. with Proarcestes ombonii TOMMASI and Proarcestes cf. subtridentinus MOJS.

    blogentry-2660-0-05340900-1392401683.jpg

    Fig. 14 Pt. cf. longobardicum, some juvenile Arcestes sp. and the brachiopod Austriellula dilatata.

    blogentry-2660-0-99868300-1392401698.jpg

    Fig. 15 Epigymnites breunneri (HAUER) and Monophyllites wengensis (KLIPSTEIN)

    blogentry-2660-0-95674300-1392401725.jpg

    Fig. 16 Epigymnites arthaberi MOJS. and Monophyllites wengensis (KLIPSTEIN)

    blogentry-2660-0-23959900-1392401749.jpg

    Fig. 17 Gymnites raphaelis TOMMASI

    blogentry-2660-0-86778400-1392401782.jpg

    Fig. 18Discinisca sp. Looks like a fossil Limpet gastropod (Patellidae) but in reality it is an inarticulate Brachiopoda

    blogentry-2660-0-70730000-1392401810.jpg

    Fig. 19Sturia cf. semiarata together with Proarcestes cf. ombonii

    The most frequent faunal element of the Ladinian within the Tethys realm is Proarcestes BRONN. This genus occurs with several species up to Carnian strata. In our location Proarcestes subtridentinus MOJS. and Proarcestes ombonii TOMMASI was often found. The second one can reach the dimension of a small ball.

    blogentry-2660-0-25316300-1392401831.jpg

    Fig. 20 Proarcestes subtridentinus

    blogentry-2660-0-26361900-1392401852.jpg

    Fig. 21 Monophyllites wengensis (KLIPSTEIN)

    In the Hallstatt limestone this genus starts with the Anisian Monophyllites sphaerophyllus via the Ladinian M. wengensis up to the Carnian M. simonyi. Within the descendants of the Triassic Phylloceratida the ancestor of the Jurassic Ammonitida is supposed.

    blogentry-2660-0-10182500-1392401883.jpg

    Fig. 22 Ptychites cf. pauli MOJS. This species of Ptychites show deeply incised second and third Lateral saddles. I think that this is a feature of allmost all "late" species of Ptychites.

    blogentry-2660-0-80698400-1392401907.jpg

    Fig. 23 Ptychites cf. plusiae RENZ

    blogentry-2660-0-49893600-1392401928.jpg

    Fig. 24 Sageceras walteri

    I hope you have enjoyed this new report about the Ladinian strata of my favourite collecting area.

    Again I thank, “Danke Roger”, Fossil forum member “Ludwigia” for correcting my “Austrian” English.

    Kind regards

    Andreas

    Literature:

    ALMA, F. H. (1926). Eine Fauna des Wettersteinkalkes bei Innsbruck. Annalen des Naturhistorischen Museums in Wien, 40, 111-129.

    BACHMANN, GH, JACOBSHAGEN, V (1974) Zur Fazies und Entstehung der Hallstätter Kalke von Epidauros (Anis bis Karn; Argolis, Griechenland). Z Deutsch Geol Ges, 125: 195-223

    DIENER, C. 1900: Die triadische Cephalopoden-Fauna der Schiechlinghöhe bei Hallstatt. Beiträge zur Paläontologie Österreich-Ungarns und des Orient 13

    v. HAUER, F. (1888). Die Cephalopoden des bosnischen Muschelkalkes von Han Bulog bei Sarajevo. KK Hof-und Staatsdruckerei.

    von Hauer, F. (1888. KK Hof-und Staatsdruckerei.

    KITTL, E., 1908, Beiträge zur Kenntnis der Triasbildungen der nordöstlichen

    Dobrudscha. Denkschriften der mathematisch-naturwissenschaftlichen Klasse der

    kaiserlichen: Akademie der Wissenschaften, v. 81, p. 445- 532

    KRISTAN-TOLLMANN, E, KRYSTYN, L (1975) Die Mikrofauna der ladinisch-karnischen Hallstätter Kalke von Sakliblei (Taurus-Gebirge, Türkei). Sitzungsber. Österr. Akad. Wiss. Math. Naturwiss. Kl. Abt. I, 184 (8-10): 259-340

    KRYSTYN, L. Zur Ammoniten und Conodonten-Stratigraphie der Hallstätter Obertrias(Salzkammergut, Österreich), Verh.Geol. B.-A., Wien 1973

    KRYSTYN, L (1983) The Epidauros Section (Greece) – a contribution to the conodont standard zonation of the Ladinian and Lower Carnian of the Tethys Realm. Schriftenreihe Erdwiss. Komm. Österr. Akad. Wiss., 5: 231-258.

    MOJSISOVICS, E. 1893: Die Cephalopoden der Hallstätter Kalke, Abhandlungen der Kaiserlich-Königlichen Geologischen Reichsanstalt, II Band, Wien 1893

    MOJSISOVICS, E. 1896: Beiträge zur Kenntniss der obertriadischen Cephalopoden Faunen des Himalaya, Denkschriften der Kaiserlichen Akademie der Wissenschaften

    Mathematisch–naturwissenschaftliche Classe, 63, 575–701. Wien 1896,

    TOZER, E. T. 1994. Canadian Triassic ammonoid faunas. Geological Survey of Canada Bulletin, 467, 1–663.

    MOJSISOVICS, E. V. 1879. Vorlaufige kurze Übersicht der Ammoniten-Gattungen

    der mediterranen und juvavischen Trias. Verhandlungen der kaiserlich-

    königlichen geologischen Reichsanstalt, 1879(7):133–143.

    MOJSISOVICS, E. V. 1882. Die Cephalopoden der mediterranen Triasprovinz.

    Abhandlungen der kaiserlich-königlischen geologischen Reichsanstalt, 10, 1–322.

    NITTEL, P. (2006) Geo Alp, Vol.3, S93-145, Beiträge zur Stratigraphie und Mikropaläontologie der Mitteltrias der Innsbrucker Nordkette(Nördliche Kalkalpen Austria)

    PISTOTNIK, U. 1973-74 Fazies und Tektonik der Hallstätter Zone

    von Bad Ischl — Bad Aussee (Salzkammergut, Österreich)

    RENZ, C. – 1931 Die Bulogkalke der Insel Hydra, Ostpeloponnes

    RENZ, C. (1910): Die mesozoischen Faunen Griechenlands I. Die triadischen Faunen der Argolis, Palaeontographica 58, S. 1-103, Tab. 1-7, Fig. 15

    RENZ, C. Neue griechische Trias Ammoniten aus den Verhandlungen der

    Naturforschenden Ges. Basel. S. 218- 255, Tab. 6-8, Abb. l, Basel.

    SALOPEK M. 1911,Über die Cephalopoden der mittleren Trias von Süddalmatien und Montenegro, Abhandlungen der .k.k geol. Reichsanstalt, Band 16, Heft 3

    WEITSCHAT, W. & LEHMANN, U. Stratigraphy and ammonoids from the Middle Triassic Botneheia Formation (Daonella Shales) of Spitsbergen

    With plates 1-6, 2 tables and 9 text-figures Mitt. Geol.-PaläonInst. Univ. Hamburg. Heft 54, S. 27-54

    WENDT, J. (1970) Stratigraphische Kondensation in triadischen und jurassischen Cephalopodenkalken der Tethys. N. Jb. Geol. Paläont. Mh., 1970/7: 433-448

  17. jesus' Blog

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  18. Hihimanu Hale

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    Triops808
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    Hello to The Fossil Forum!

    Lately I am starting a souvenir collection of Aetobatis fossils. It's slow going, but I am just beginning:) I do all my collecting trading or purchasing fossils, since I live in Hawaii, and am disabled so can't easily get out in the fossil fields.

    When I was young I used to see the baby Spotted Eagle Rays swimming in the bay or out in the canal at Waikiki. They are adorable! I don't know how long this link will be good, but here is a short video I found on the net. Someone is selling live baby rays for aquariums. So cute!

    http://www.adpost.com/my/pets/22650

    I want to recommend 2 of some of my favorite fossil dealers for shopping for shark and ray fossils.

    Buried Treasure Fossils: http://www.buriedtreasurefossils.com

    Vast selection of shark and ray teeth from all over the world, you can spend hours just browsing these catalogs! Very informative as well as very good shopping!

    Fossiliferous: E.R. Matheau-Raven:

    http://www.fossiliferous.co.uk/

    Very nice selection of all kinds of fossils, with a lot of unusual UK pieces.

    I just ordered some Aetobatis teeth from both of these friendly and helpful dealers this morning. The teeth are fragments, but very good ones, fine examples of extinct Aetobatis. Some of the pieces are 1" long, I wonder how bit the rays were in life?

    That's all for now, talk to you all soon:) Good luck fishing in stone my friends!

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    So im a little unsure where to start out, i guess im going to write this all down to try and gather my thoughts and update my progress, Im aiming to become competent enuf in fossil prep to be able to get a paid full time job in something im massivley intrested in. Currently ive got boxes and boxes of uk fossils, mostly ammonites. They all need prepping too. Seems the ideal place to start, but first i need the equitment. Check, well sort of ive got a compressor and a st pen tho its in storeage and about 300 miles away. When i did use it ive found it nearly impossible to clen anything up, so the next step is to get a TT pen orderd. money permitting i shuld have this by the end of this month.

    On a slightly unrelated not......ive got all these ammonites and would happily trade them for other fossils so i can get some slightly diffrent things to prep. Secondly im in the UK , so anyone wanting to come over hear to hunt let me know as ive got some sweet spots whear ive found an icthysaur and ammonite about 18inches across. I will add pics some time but they are in storeage too at the moment.

  19. Hello Everyone its been way to long since my last entry. I've been sharing on the Facebook page because its so easy to upload from my phone. But I will start back bogging...... I miss it :)

    I found these cephalopods two weeks ago here in middle TN- Leipers Formation from what I'm told. I found it interesting how the shell casing seems to have been peeled back on both......

  20. Lepidodendrons

    blogentry-814-0-25566400-1379333148.jpgblogentry-814-0-31338200-1379333151.jpgblogentry-814-0-57246800-1379333154.jpg

    Lepidophloios laricinus

    blogentry-814-0-70893600-1379333191.jpgblogentry-814-0-93044000-1379333193.jpgblogentry-814-0-34017900-1379333196.jpg

    Seed ferns (Cyclopteris, Neuropteris, Macroneuropteris, Mariopteris, Mixoneura, seed fern rachis impression, seed fern male fructification)

    blogentry-814-0-13507100-1379333231.jpgblogentry-814-0-55645100-1379333233.jpgblogentry-814-0-10792800-1379333237.jpgblogentry-814-0-21294600-1379333240.jpgblogentry-814-0-97433700-1379333243.jpgblogentry-814-0-19723700-1379333246.jpgblogentry-814-0-43683900-1379333249.jpg

    Bothrodendrons

    blogentry-814-0-47100100-1379333594.jpgblogentry-814-0-19844700-1379333597.jpgblogentry-814-0-67461500-1379333600.jpgblogentry-814-0-28806200-1379333603.jpg

    Sigillaria

    blogentry-814-0-43993100-1379333713.jpg

    Calamites (Calamostachys, Macrostachya, Asterophyllites)

    blogentry-814-0-19212400-1379333815.jpgblogentry-814-0-45951800-1379333819.jpgblogentry-814-0-94667800-1379333822.jpg

    Cordaicarpus (Cordaites seed)

    blogentry-814-0-67074000-1379333888.jpg

    Dicranophyllum

    blogentry-814-0-32663200-1379333932.jpg

    Jurassic (Bothonian) petwood

    blogentry-814-0-45801000-1379334110.jpg

    Euproops danae

    blogentry-814-0-48422700-1379333672.jpg

    Trigonia Myophorella

    blogentry-814-0-98021100-1379334050.jpg

    to be continued...

  21. meadow's Blog

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    blog-0928283001370478681.jpgMy dad
  22. jsnrice
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    These are some of the highlights from a trip to you-Dig in Delta Utah for my undergrad Historical Geology course at BYU-Idaho.

  23. the pterosaurs saw what happened that day

    a second Sun dropped from the sky

    the pressure wave blasted those closest to haze

    and wafted their ashes on high

    then hundreds more pterosaurs lifeless and torn

    took flight in a terrible dance

    broken umbrellas tossed far by the storm

    untethered kites left to mischance

    thousands of pterosaurs fell like dead leaves

    caught up in sudden tumultuous seas

    waves smashed the pterosaurs huddled on land

    waves buried eggs under layers of sand

    the dark with mercy tried to hide these ravages in night

    receding waters banked the once majestic bodies high

    and now at last as all the worlds great forests come alight

    they are transformed

    as cinders reborn

    they take their final flight