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
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
For millennia, humankind has been fascinated by the hard-external shell of the organisms classified within the Phylum Mollusca. Consumed first as food, their empty shells have served multiple functions in the past; as tools in many ancient cultures, in religious ceremonies by the Aztecs, and money by Pacific Islanders. During the Age of Discovery, sailors could supplement their meager incomes by selling exotic seashells to wealthy gentlemen for their Cabinets of Curiosity. Today many people f
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 medic
For some general information, including some maps, about the Campanian St. Bartholomä-formation in Styria, Austria see:
The rudist-bearing St. Bartholomä-formation covers an area of about 3km2. Within this area, there are a few sweet spots, where rudist can be found with some confidence: one of the creeks west of Kalchberg; a pile of rocks west of Kalchberg, collected during ce
Sooo, this tiny little thing was was picked up two years ago on Lyme Regis beach, the nodule it was in was pretty big and i had high hopes that it contained more than one.
Alas, sadly only this poor little soul was retrieved and with a broken shell too.
Still, I'm pretty pleased with it considering its my first go at prep work and with no sandblaster. i just cant believe it has taken a little over a month to get the little bugger out.
i'm in two mind if i should try and re
Since the upload of Part 1 succeeded, I'll now offer up Part 2, a look at two interesting taxa from the family Globigerinidae. This family contains most of the taxa that we associate with the idea of "planktonic forams", perhaps due to our familiarity with the "globigerina oozes" that form a significant part of the floor of the modern world oceans.
Globigerinoides ruber (d’Orbigny, 1839) is one of the two “red” species of globigerinids, as the specific epithet indicates. It is well
Planktonic Foraminifera are particularly important in biostratigraphic studies and correlation, as they are ubiquitous in marine deposits, and evolve rapidly. They first appeared in Middle Jurassic time, and thus have a long geological history. There are many phylogenetic and correlational studies available, and their rapid evolution makes them exceptionally useful as temporal markers, or guide fossils.
I am currently looking at planktonic Foraminifera from a deep-water sample that
The Lomita Marl Member of the San Pedro Formation is a well-known source for Middle Pleistocene marine fossils, and its beautifully preserved molluscan fauna has been treasured by fossil fanatics for decades. There are outcrops in the city of San Pedro, California, although many of the "classic" localities have been destroyed by urban development. It is well-exposed in the Lomita Quarry, located in the Palos Verdes Hills northwest of the city. It has been dated at 400,000 to 570,000 years ago
One of the problems I experience in studying microfossils is that of orienting a specimen so that crucial characters are visible. An example: for identification it is often necessary to check the shape of the tooth in the aperture of taxa in the family Hauerinidae. The tooth can be long or short, plain or bifid, present or missing, etc. The aperture is on the end of the test, so it isn't possible to look into it when the test is lying flat -- which it always does when the test is lying in a t
While picking specimens of Foraminifera from the Taylor Marl, of the Texas Cretaceous Gulfian Series, I found several fragments of a taxon that I could not recognize. However, today I found a nearly complete specimen of what is obviously the same organism.
Frondicularia christneri Carsey, 1926 does not look much like a typical member of the genus. The overall shape of the test is fairly normal, but the sutures form a rather unusual pattern, and they are raised above th
When I was preparing my previous entry on nodosariid forams from the Pecan Gap Chalk, I originally included a specimen that I had identified as a member of the genus Dentalina. This identification was incorrect, and I edited the entry to remove that specimen. Here it is again, with what I hope is the correct identification!
The genus Strictocostella is a member of the family Stilostomellidae, and this species is illustrated in Frizzell's "Handbook of Cretaceous Foramin
I have recently been studying a sample of washed residues from the Pecan Gap Chalk Formation of the Cretaceous Gulfian Series, from an outcrop in the vicinity of Austin, Texas. Most of the Gulfian formations are richly fossiliferous, and the Pecan Gap is no exception. It has abundant, well-preserved microfossils, particularly forams and ostracodes. In this blog entry I would like to show some forams of the family Nodosariidae, which I find of particular interest. All belong to the genus Fron
The modern sperm whale Physeter macrocephalus (which means "long-headed blower") has been celebrated and feared in classic literature, often being depicted as ruthless ship-destroyers, most famous of these literature was Herman Melville's novel Moby Dick. But fossil discoveries in the early 2000s beg to differ, revealing a massive leviathan as big as the sperm whale but with powerful and gigantic jaws spawning teeth bigger than a human arm and an appetite that would make Moby Dick resemble a min
I had a good weekend on the river this past Saturday and Sunday. I did some fishing and scouting for new dig spots. I have yet to find my own place where 1. no one else knows/digs that I am networked with 2. that produces decent quality and OK quantity. Saturday evening that was checked off from my fossil hunting bucket list, though. I plugged down the river in my lil 14' jon boat, saw some shells atop a bank that looked familiar to the fossil pecten in edgecomb county and made a quick dash to t
Diatoms are monocellular organisms which contain chlorophyll, and manufacture their own food in the same manner as plants, through the process of photosynthesis. They are one of the major producers of the Earth's oxygen. Their long geological history makes them very useful in the correlation of sedimentary rocks, and they are of equal value in reconstructing paleoenvironments. They are remarkably common everywhere there is any water at all! I have studied fossil marine diatoms for many years
In 1958, Louis S. Kornicker and John Imbrie wrote a brief paper on the holothurian sclerites of the Florena Shale in which they described four species. I have found 3 specimens of one of these, Microantyx permiana Kornicker and Imbrie, 1958. Two of these specimens were badly broken, but one is in fair condition.
The sclerites are wheel-shaped with short spokes, and the openings between the spokes are roughly triangular. In this dorsal view we can see a distinctive tr
In this entry I would like to show two of the commonest Foraminifera from my sample of the Florena Shale. The most common forams by far are the fusulinids, but as these are not identifiable without thin sections, they will have to wait until I'm equipped to deal with them. Excepting the fusulinids, the commonest foram is Globivalvulina bulloides (Brady, 1876):
This taxon has an enrolled biserial structure, and in spiral view it typically exhibits one large and two smal
In this second entry I would like to show well-preserved specimens of two ostracodes: the very long-ranging taxon Amphissites centronotus (Ulrich and Bassler, 1906), and the Permian taxon Cornigella parva Kellett, 1933. The former belongs in the family Amphissitidae, while the latter is placed in the family Drepanellidae.
This specimen is a relatively late instar, but not fully mature, as final instar specimens average about 50% larger. The species is very easy to reco
I recently received some samples of washed residues from various shales and marls noted for their microfossil content. One of the best of these is from southern Kansas, of Permian (Wolfcampian) age, from the Council Grove Group, Beattie Limestone Formation, Florena Shale Member. The sample is amazingly rich, and I have recovered numerous species of Foraminifera and Ostracoda, as well as many nice bryozoan fragments. In this blog entry I would like to show one of the more interesting microfoss
Sunday, 12/18/2016, will be a day documented with great detail in my personal memory bank. As you read this, keep in mind, I am one of those people who remain in constant awe of the world around me; curiously exploring every little detail, often finding excitement in the things most would consider average or common. Every Trip I’ve made to Greens Mill Run these past three years has been one of such joy, excitement and inspiration – regardless of what treasures (and junk) I had found or imagined
Toby (my 10yo son) and I at the site for a group #BlackFriday #Fossil hunt #optoutside #outddoorresearch, Nov 25, 2016
There's a particular creek/ditch site my son and I like to frequent. It's not the easiest site and not always as productive as we'd like, but it's a good site nonetheless. I've been studying the stratigraphy to better
understand what could be there as I get to know the species of the fossils we find. We h
Sorry it has been so long since I last posted. I have been so busy with school, family life, and lots of technical problems. But I finally was able to finish my video and I am so excited to share my work with all of you!
This video is about my latest fossil cleaning, It is my favorite trilobite to date! It is actually a complete body fossil, not just a shell, or a piece of one. I did learn a few new things this time. I had some trouble with this one because the air
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!
Hello everyone! Sorry that it has been a while since I posted. I have been so busy with school. Physics keeps me pretty busy lol!
So I have been working on my trilobites. This time I found out that working with the air abrasive it can be good to point the air parallel with the grooves of the trilobite. This way I can maximize the removal of the matrix and minimize the removal of the actual fossil. Because the angle of the air abrasive is parallel the force vector has a minimal contact
So I thought that I would do quick little posts along with the more in depth ones. I decided that I can use these to answer questions or explain one thing quickly.
This time I decided that I would talk about the orange bucked I have sitting on the floor. It is a dust trap machine. It uses water to catch the air abrasive material and the rock bits that are cut away by the abrasive. It works really well!! I have been using it for a couple of weeks and I just cleaned out our vacuum and t
Hello everyone! So i have been hard at work. Last time I damaged a couple of fossils because the PSI on the sandblasting machine was too high while I was working on removing matrix directly off the fossil. This time I learned that higher pressures like 20 or 40 PSI can be useful for removing large amounts of matrix that are not directly touching the fossil. While lower pressures like 5 PSI are useful for removing small amounts of matrix to expose details of fossils. Also it is a good idea t