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Showing most informative content since 04/29/2017 in all areas

  1. 13 likes
    Without visible inclusions or knowing where it was found, it is almost impossible to determine whether or not it is a coprolite. Most of the siliceous rocks identified in rock shops (especially those identified as coprolites from the Morrison Formation in Utah) are questionable. With coprolites, you want to consider the following: Shape - Is there evidence of sphincter (pinch) marks, intestinal folds, etc? Proximity - Was it found near body fossils, footprints, or a nesting area? Are there visible inclusions (bone, scales, etc.) Is it phosphatic? Carnivore coprolites primarily consist of calcium phosphate - the same mineral prevalent in bone. Does it contain backfilled burrows? Dung beetles create backfilled burrows that are sometimes visible when herbivore coprolites are cut. Does it contain undigested plant material? In my own collection, I usually classify specimens like yours as dubiocoprolites. I hope this helps.
  2. 10 likes
    I think they're spiny brittlestar arms. Something like this but with longer central ossicles:
  3. 10 likes
    Yes, there certainly are leaves there, but if they're at all fossiliferous, then definitely not very old, at the oldest Holocene, I'd say. It looks like they originate from a sinter deposit similar to the one in the photo below which is only a few decades old.
  4. 9 likes
    So I didn't know where to post this, but figured fossil hunting trips would be a good spot since the kids were doing an indoor fossil hunt! Today I did my annual class for the Western Interior Paleontological Society (WIPS) Kids Club. It is always a hit, but due to scheduling I was unable to make the February class and did this one in May. May tends to be a smaller group because of the nice weather and vacations, but we still had a great time! The adults even wanted to get in on this activity and I was more than happy to help! The worst thing that happened was I forgot to take lots of pictures! I took (2) 5 gallon buckets of matrix, one bucket from Peace River, FL and the second bucket from Aurora, NC. I talked to the kids about how fossils in different locations can be similar (ie. shark teeth!) and we explained the importance of labeling your finds! Each person was given (1) 5-ounce cup of matrix from Peace River, and (1) 5-ounce cup of matrix from Aurora. We set up microscopes and laptops an allowed the kids to photograph their 5 favourite finds. We set out books, posters, and print outs to help with the identification part. They then loaded these photos on to a USB and have some very nice detailed photos to take home with all of their finds. That's right, I let them keep EVERYTHING! One kid found a cookie cutter tooth, full root and all! I don't even have one in my collection yet! Aside from keeping everything they found I made sure to send each kid home with a small 125mL bag of each matrix, and 5 various fossils from my Peace River hunting trips ((3) 25mm+ shark teeth, a dugong rib, and a turtle piece.) I shared with them my preferred methods of hunting and encouraged them to try their own! All in all it was a great day with lots of very nice finds! Thanks again to @Sacha for sending me Peace River matrix for my classes!
  5. 8 likes
    I have just attained a goal of mine here at The Fossil Forum; my number of community reputation points has equaled 50% of my total content points: 440 out of 878 content points. So far currently, I know of only two other people with a moderate number of total points who have achieved that honor: phylloceras and painshill. They both beat me by a mile, congratulations. Painshill has a ratio of content points to community reputation of 62.5% while phylloceras has an amazing ratio of 71.2%. If you want to earn more community points do what works best for me. Help a poster to ID their fossil finds or answer questions by researching on the internet or in your personal library. I like to find a picture or some literature to give to them. If you do find some good paleontology literature that is legally posted on the internet, consider helping to build Fruitbat's library of paleontological documents. Fruitbat has accumulated the best paleontological library on the internet. See: http://www.thefossilforum.com/index.php?/topic/14728-fruitbats-pdf-library-table-of-contents/ Thank you to everyone on The Fossil Forum for making this such an awesome website. John
  6. 8 likes
    @JohnBrewer @Jesuslover340 The 6 sides are labeled: T (top) B (bottom) N (north) S (south) E (east) W (west) They are design to be used as an orientation cube as well as a size cube. As you turn the fossil you turn the cube accordingly, that way everyone knows what side of the fossil they are seeing. Also works for in situ pictures if you want to record direction in which fossil was found in relation to magnetic north, if that makes sense.
  7. 8 likes
    After and result This Ichtyosaurus present one pathology, he have 6 fingers and normally this specie have 5... Work time : 150h (for two-tree guys).
  8. 8 likes
    I removed the matrix from what is present of the cranidium. Here is a "before", "after", and an overlay over the specimen photo that @piranha provided to show what is present and place it into context. Thanks again!
  9. 7 likes
    The Fossil Forum has reached an important milestone: we now have 1,000 fossils with pictures and descriptions in our collections section. We beat our fellow paleontology website MyFossil to the 1,000 mark even though they had a big head start; they started in November 2014 while we started last September. Check out the quality fossils and posts at MyFossil: http://www.myfossil.org/. I encourage everyone to help create the best online digital collection of fossils in the world. Take a look at your best fossils and see if we could use a picture of it in our digital fossil collection. I have seen a lot of fossils in FF posts that are worthwhile to add to our collection.
  10. 7 likes
    A very large question! Let's work backwards: first of all, consider the medium you'll be working in. Not all fossils and matrix will require the exact same tools, just as different tools are used by a sculptor to work in clay as opposed to iron, or a painter who uses oil as opposed to watercolour. Knowing what kind of fossils you would like to prep should probably be the first question prior to rushing out and buying tools that may not be the right fit for the job. Some fossils require heavy-duty scribes, while others just need a pin vise and patience In terms of acquiring fossils, you have a good range of options: 1) You can collect them yourself out in the field; 2) You can purchase them on auction sites or fossil sales sites (and keep on the lookout for offers on un-prepped fossils); 3) You can purchase them at rock and fossil shows; 4) Once you have participated enough on this forum, the Member-to-Member Trade and Sales threads will be unlocked. For now, think about what kind of fossils interest you most, and then peruse this Fossil Preparation thread for advice, including paying particular attention to the pinned topics. After that, once you have a load of un-prepped fossils and the right tools, you might need some advice if/when you come up to a particular problem piece, or you are unsure about the functionality of your tools (or even the grit grade for different kinds of matrix!). Apart from all that, some general advice is to study what the fossil would look like in a fully prepped form as that will guide you - like a marble sculptor - in knowing what to remove. Also, get some practice pieces to try on first: very few people get it perfect on the first try, and it is better to have an "oops" on something dispensable than to risk wrecking what could be a fantastic piece
  11. 7 likes
    Hi all! Nice periotic. That appears closest to periotics which Whitmore and Kaltenbach (2008) identified as aff. Liolithax pappus (which they transferred to Lophocetus). Harry: left periotic is a kogiid pygmy sperm whale; right periotic is not Pomatodelphis but within the clade Delphinida (Inioidea + Delphinoidea); Pomatodelphis has a second little flange next to the posterior process and still has some semblance of an anterior bullar facet. This specimen is very likely a "kentriodontid", perhaps something like Kentriodon.
  12. 7 likes
    It is the root of a Lepidodendron tree , a Stigmaria sp.
  13. 7 likes
    Here is the original description of Amphilichas (=Acrolichas) shideleri Foerste, A.F. (1919) LINK Notes on Isotelus, Acrolichas, Calymene, and Encrinurus. Bulletin of the Scientific Laboratories of Denison University, 19:65-81 There is very little published info on this species. Dan Cooper did a brief description for MAPS 1986. Cooper, Dan (1986) Cincinnatian Trilobites. MAPS Digest, 9(4&5):24-32 Amphilichas shideleri Cranidium moderately convex; glabella broad and subrectangular; median lobe expanded anteriorly; basal area tending to become depressed; foremost pair of lateral glabellar furrows extended backward to form longitudinal furrows reaching occipital furrow; axial furrows diverted posteriorly; circumscribed occipital lobes present; occipital ring broad; preglabellar field absent; fixigenae subtriangular; palpebral lobes marked off by furrows; anterior sections of facial sutures converging forward, running parallel to axial furrows. Thorax composed of 11 segments; axis broad; axial furrows shallow; pleurae horizontal and transverse proximally, bent downward and backward at fulcra. Pygidium with axis extending whole of length and unfurrowed 3rd pleurae with single free points. One of the rarest of Cincinnatian trilobites, even fragments of this species are extremely rare to find. Only one complete specimen owned by the Smithsonian was known until Jeff Aubry, Bill White, Bob White, Steve Felton, David Cooper and myself made a co-sponsored dig producing 5 complete specimens. 4 of those specimens are now in the possession of the Cincinnati Museum of Natural History.
  14. 7 likes
    Thank you for the picture! It looks close to Isocrinus. For example, Isocrinus cf. robustus is a common crinoid of the Lower Jurrasic of England. This document might help with more details: Hunter, A.W. , Clark, N.D.L. 2009. The discovery of Isocrinus cf. robustus from the Lias Group (Lower Jurassic) near Dunrobin Castle, Sutherland, Scotland. Proceedings of the Geologists’ Association, 120(1). pp. 76-78.
  15. 6 likes
    Check out a Plicatula sp. possibly Plicatula dentonensis, a small oyster with pronounced ribs that occurs in the Duck Creek Fm. See Finsley's "Field Guide To Fossils of Texas". What other fossils are associated with this one?
  16. 6 likes
    Completely agree this is serpulid worm tubes encrusting a bryozoan-encrusted shell. I don't see anything that resembles a rugose coral, or any coral (rugosan, tabulate, or scleractinian). There is no indication of septa, tabulae, dissepiments, or any other internal structure that would be expected of a coral. Corals also don't form such an irregular mass of meandering tubes; where the colony takes the form of a mass of disjunct individual tubes (a growth form termed "phaceloid" or "fasiculate", as opposed to a massive colony of connected coralites which is "cerioid"), the individual corallites tend to be long and relatively straight, not twisting back on themselves. Don
  17. 6 likes
  18. 6 likes
    The BLM stopped by our museum today with a little surprise! I figured some people may be interested to see what exactly happens when the police and the state come to confiscate your fossils! Say you have just been reported for collecting fossils on BLM land without a permit. The BLM comes to your house and basically runs an audit on you. They want documentation and paperwork for every fossil you have. If you don't have a reasonable explanation for them, they start questioning everything! Once the BLM makes their decision you are given a court date and a judge decides what should happen next. The fossils, if it is decided they were illegally collected, become property of the state and are sent to a repository. Along with the fossils we received: photos of each piece of bone with a court number A piece of paper telling us what was there a box of bone (weighing about 14 pounds!) I did not photograph the photographs as I don't have the skills or ability to edit the logos and court numbers out. The first photo is our letter we received (if this shows too much can you please edit it further @Fossildude19) This photo is the bones that we were given. You can see some have been sliced and marked up, obviously this person was going to slab and cab these pieces most likely to sell. While these may just be chunkosaurus the most important thing to remember is that they were collected illegally. Regardless of what they are the individual did not have permits or permission to collect them. I was told by the officer that this was a multiple offense case. Each piece of bone brings a separate charge as well as a larger charge on a whole. We didn't discuss much beyond broad terms, but the investigation was closed and the state decided that we could use these bones for educational purposes! The good news for us, we get some cool chunkosaurus to show off! The down side is that people don't follow the rules and it puts legal collecting at risk for all of us!
  19. 6 likes
    Thank you all for the kind words regarding my photos. I decided to type up my general procedure and have also posted it on my profile page as well. I am often asked how I make my fossil photos, so here is what I have learned so far about photographing and editing. Because I mainly focus on very tiny fossils, my set up is rather specialized (and homemade). The camera is an old Sony Cybershot with a Super Macro setting. Photo size is set to maximum (5 meg). The photo stand pictured uses those nice new 'cool' temperature bulbs. The glass jar allows light to come from below as well as from the sides. The fossils sit on an opaque plastic lid (from a resealable grocery item) which eliminates pesky shadows. I do use a flash to take the place of noon outdoor light which works so well for large fossils. Plus, I feel that it helps bring out the details of texture and dimension. I take multiple pictures of the same fossil from all important views. The scale is photographed along with a batch of pictures taken at that height and then is replaced in the edited photos with a digital scale to match. Then comes the editing in Photoshop. No matter the software used, it only a matter of time and practice to be satisfied with the results. Looking back at my first attempts at fossil photography prove that. I do spend a lot of time on my edits. I enjoy that part almost as much as the hunt. The most crucial part of the edit is the removal of the background. There are many tools to do that fast, but I am a stickler for detail and it is important to me that the final image is as true to the actual fossil as possible. So, I carefully isolate the fossil by cutting it out with the lasso tool following the edge precisely. Photoshop's 'refine edge' setting does a nice job of imperceptibly smoothing the edges when adjusted correctly. If contrast or colour need adjusting to match the original this is then done. Then the subject is placed on a neutral background with the correct scale and resized and saved for the web. Of course it helps that I use Photoshop professionally, but part of my job is training newbies to use it, so I know that anyone who is determined can achieve good results with practice whatever the software. A good fossil deserves a good photo.
  20. 6 likes
    kshaefer, Your specimen is definitely a branch of a lycopod such as Lepidodendron. Micah, Despite a superficial resemblance, your specimen is completely different. Both specimens have a sort of rhomboid pattern, but kschaefer's fossil is long and straight whereas yours is a fragment of a disk in which the rhomboid elements are arranged in a spiral pattern. The rhomboid structures in Lepidodendron are leaf scars that are just on the surface, whereas the rhomboid elements of recepticulitids are connected to pillar-like structures that extend through the entire thickness of the disk. kschaefer's specimen could never be a recepticulitid, because it is long and straight, not a disk with spirally arranged elements. Also (on a minor and picky note) the name is Fisherites, the "s" is part of the name. Calling it "a fisherite" is like me calling you "a mica". When referring to the taxonomic Order or Family, it is OK to use the shorthand "recepticulitid" instead of writing out "a member of the Family Recepticulitidae". Certain people on the Forum use the term "fisherite" but it is not correct, no paleontologist would know what you were talking about if you identified something as "a fisherite". Don
  21. 6 likes
    Possibly Protoleptostrophia perplana. Definitely a Strophomenid. Your photos brightened and cropped: It's better when taking pictures of brachiopods to take the pictures from directly above, with the hinge line on top. That's usually how they are figured in publications. Regards,
  22. 6 likes
    All of the Deinonychus material I've ever seen comes from the Cloverly Formation of Montana which is much more common than other localities. I read that fossils have been found in other states including the Cedar Mountain Formation of Utah but are extremely rare. I've not seen much published from these other areas so this is what I understand from Montana's specimens. A number of characteristics need to be examined to determine if this is one : size and shape of tooth, serrations placement and count. Your tooth is equivalent to figure A in the photo. Teeth in the Cloverly are not as large as the one you're asking about and rarely approach 20 mm, yours is around 30mm, see photo. It's a 3 meter long dromaeosaurid with a small skull so it's not a large dinosaur. One key feature with Dromaeosaurid teeth is that the density of the serrations on the both carinae should be different. On Deinonychus teeth the Distal side (posterior) serrations should be twice as large as the medial (anterior) ones. You need better photos of both edges to determine that. Distal count: (16 to 18 serrations over 5mm at midline). Medial (30 over 5mm at midline) The crowns are also slightly asymmetrical see A2 so one side is fatter than the other along the carina. Will need a view similiar to A2 to determine that. Next feature is that the distal serrations are present from the tip to base. Difficult to see with your photos. The attached image comes from Ostroms Peabody book Osteology of D. antrirrops of Montana. So based on the information you provided it's difficult to determine what you have and without a more specific locality impossible.
  23. 6 likes
    Welcome to the Forum! It looks like a chaetetid demosponge , to me. picture from here picture from here
  24. 6 likes
    Just thought I would show Sam Noble's 'trophy' specimen-a Pentaceratops with the largest skull of any animal ever found Apparently, this specimen had been hidden away in the collection for awhile before its significance was realized. Unfortunately, it was a big restoration project, as it had lots of plaster, bolts, and rods throughout in a prior attempt to keep it together. Considering its past, it proudly stands on display today with nary an indication that it was once a "Pentaborg"
  25. 6 likes
    from Stridsberg,probably also in Fruitbat's:
  26. 6 likes
    This is a partial Amphilichas cranidium. There is a portion of the glabella, composite lateral lobe (cl), longitudinal (lf) occipital (of) furrows and the occipital ring.
  27. 6 likes
    This appears to be an equus horse lower tooth, a left premolar 2 (p2).
  28. 6 likes
    Hi Brian and welcome to the forum. It's an internal mould in flint of a regular echinoid (sea urchin), from the Upper Cretaceous Chalk. Always a satisfying find!
  29. 5 likes
    I agree, serpulids and bryozoans on a shell, all modern. There's nothing fossil of that sort on the NE England coast. Great photo and a good piece for study!
  30. 5 likes
    Definitely not a rugose coral, but calcareous serpulid tubeworms. As Tim says, it could be modern. Here is a link @abyssunder posted last year explaining more about them: https://natureinfocus.blog/2010/01/13/calcareous-worm-tubes-on-flat-oyster-shells/
  31. 5 likes
    For your updated information, your trilobite is a Greenops barberi, not Greenops boothi
  32. 5 likes
    Hi. Here is a picture of two plant spores which I found. They are useful for finding fish fossils as most of the ones which I find come from thin layers of coal-like shale from within coal seams, so once I have found a coal seam I usually look in the shale above it which usually contains fish fossils. Overall I think your fossils are most likely to be macrospores, though ostracods are a possibility. Daniel
  33. 5 likes
    Welcome to The Fossil Forum! The third picture is actually not an insect (note that it has eight 'walking' legs). It is a small arachnid called a pseudoscorpion (Order Pseudoscorpiones). You might find this article interesting: Henderickx, H. and M. Boone (2016). The Basal Pseudoscorpion Family Feaellidae Ellingsen, 1906 Walks the Earth for 98,000,000 Years: A New Fossil Genus Has Been Found in Cretaceous Burmese Amber (Pseudoscorpiones: Feaellidae). Publicatie Entomo-Info, 27(1). -Joe
  34. 5 likes
    Thanks for the photo, that's helpful. The erratics come from boulder clay in the cliff, having been transported by glacier, so that's OK. That's a Dactylioceras, the species probably being tenuicostatum or maybe semicelatum, from the Grey Shale Member at the base of the Toarcian stage (Lower Jurassic). The belemnite that accompanies those is invariably Passaloteuthis bisulcata. In the North Yorkshire coast exposures, it often has the phragmocone attached in a nodule. It's a special bed in that respect as phragmocones are generally rare.
  35. 5 likes
    It is the very rear molar from a sloth.
  36. 5 likes
  37. 5 likes
    Yes, they are fossils. I think they are non-marine bivalves such as Carbonicola or Anthraconaia. Beds of these occur intermittently throughout the Coal Measures.
  38. 5 likes
    Where is the tooth from? Nice tooth. Nothing jumps out that it's been restored but having said that small repairs like crack fills that are not apparent in the photos are possible. Photo's don't tell the entire story you really need to hold it. The only suspect area is in the center of the crown in your last photo see my photo but I think its okay . I suggest going back to the supplier and ask him what's been done. Sauropod teeth are pretty robust and few need to be restored.
  39. 5 likes
    IV. excerpt from E. Schmid. 1972. Atlas of Animal Bones. For Prehistorians, Archaeologists and Quaternary Geologists. Elsevier, New York.
  40. 5 likes
    Oil-saturated sandstone would be a problem to display for reasons beyond structural damage. You can avoid these problems, and get the effect you want, by consolidating the fossil with an acetone/plastic solution -- Butvar B-76, Vinac, et al. are some of those plastics. Do a forum search for "preserving fossils" for lots of info, or go to my profile, the "about me" button to find extensive comments on this process. .
  41. 5 likes
  42. 5 likes
    Sorry guys, I can definitely say not a bryozoan of any sort. Do you see the small round discs in the images filling the matrix? That is the foram Orbitolina texana. Here in Texas that is an index fossil for the Glen Rose Formation (Lower Cretaceous) and based on this being Blanco County I would put money on it. The image of the limestone exposed along the creek is classic Glen Rose. The first and third image appears to be an ichno fossil. Some sort of burrow infill which would not be uncommon at all. Look for crustacean claws and carapaces. Tiny, but often a bright pinkish white so they stand out. The second image could be the impressions of a large gastropod and the fourth definitely is an eroded section of a large Nerinea. There are some units of the Glen Rose that are packed with almost nothing but those forams. But there can also be a huge variety of other fossils including some really nice echinoids (sea urchins) along with the usual marine fossils such as clams, oysters, corals, rare fish/shark teeth, etc. It is also not uncommon to find beds of the Glen Rose with dinosaur foot prints! Looks like a great spot. Let us know what else you encounter. Erich
  43. 5 likes
    I'm happy that that's a Gomphoceras-type nautiloid, as Peat Burns suggested. The last one or two chambers before the living chamber often seem to be narrower, as happens in ammonites too on maturity.
  44. 5 likes
    I have photos of very similar from my location. Demospongiae, a sponge.
  45. 5 likes
    It's fake. Looks like a mish-mash of random shells and other material stuck onto a matrix body. I don't see proper eggshell surface texture, or consistent cracks running through the body. I see that you bought it off eBay. If it's a recent purchase, you might still be under buyer's protection and be eligible for a refund. Here are three examples of what an authentic Hadrosaur egg from China looks like:
  46. 5 likes
    Interesting find leads researches to speculate that Iguanodonts were in Canada? Footprints found in the Gladstone Formation of Southwest Alberta appear to be the first piece of evidence that the range of Iguanodonts was global. The footprints are similar to Iguanodon bernissartensis which is found in the UK. https://www.paleowire.com/just-out-the-first-evidence-of-iguanodontids-dinosauria-ornithischia-in-alberta-canada-a-fossil-footprint-from-the-early-cretaceous-cretaceous-research/ The first evidence of iguanodontids (Dinosauria: Ornithischia) in Alberta, Canada – A fossil footprint from the Early Cretaceous Donald M. Henderson $$$ http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0195667117300952
  47. 5 likes
    Very nice tooth. Everything I see says T rex. Possible anterior tooth from the right dentary location
  48. 5 likes
    It's probably a sponge - most things like that in flint are! Something like this Pholidocladia (also in flint, but as a mould) from "Catalogue of the fossil sponges... of the British Museum", 1883.
  49. 5 likes
    The serrations from just observing the pictures look identical on both edges. A more precise method is to provide me a serration count like I mentioned in my first post. Just based on what I can see the morphology does not fit a dromaeosaurid. I would identify this tooth as theropod indet. it's an unidentifiable morphology. Theropods in the Kem Kem are poorly understood and answers just don't exist. Not sure if you've seen this topic I posted on this fauna. Look at the last post that I recently made it discusses dromaeosaurid's
  50. 5 likes
    Won't have to wait long. These are Zitteloceras, a type of nautiloid cephalopod. The curve and the frilly ornamentation are characteristic. Below is figure showing a typical specimen (source: V. E. McKELVEY (1939). AN ORDOVICIAN ZITTELOCERAS FROM WISCONSIN. JOURNAL OF PALEONTOLOGY, VOL. 13, No. 1, PP. 74-76.). Your specimen may belong to a different species. Don