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  1. I have a lot of unopened Mazon Creek concretions and though I do put some out in the winter for the Freeze / Thaw process, the vast majority, especially the larger ones do not open. So to dwindle my concretions, I have no problem whacking them with a hammer, and that is what I was doing today. As we all know, this is not the best way to do it since it can damage a nice specimen, but I take my chances. I always picked up any concretion that looked promising and never passed up larger ones. This all depends on the are that you are collecting, concretions from Pit 11 are never super
  2. For the last 4 years I have been collecting plant fossils from sites in East Central Illinois. These fossils were all brought to the surface by underground coal mining in the first half of the 20th century. Most of the spoil piles in the area have been graded or flattened out, but a few still remain, standing tall above the flatland. One particular pile is, I believe, the source of most or all of the fossils I find. The shale that makes up the spoil has been fired by the internal heat of the pile, resulting in the hard, reddish material known as "red dog". This shale i
  3. RandyB

    Mazon Creek 8-28-21

    Fossil Forum members were well represented at the Illinois Canal Corridor Association's Mazon Creek collecting event this weekend. My wife and I were able to make the 11 hour drive out Friday to join them and we enjoyed a productive afternoon in the creek Saturday gathering several buckets of concretions to take our first crack at freeze thaw. We also found a number of already opened specimens to wet our whistle while we do our best to be patient. Here are some of our better finds even if some are a little water worn. New to us, so the trip is already a success regardless of what
  4. Mark Kmiecik

    Five MC searching for identity.

    A couple of head scratchers and three that I would have called Pecopteris in the past. Calling on the usual MC gang @stats @deutscheben @bigred97 @Nimravis @fiddlehead @flipper559 @connorp @RCFossils and anyone else who would care to take a stab at ID.
  5. Dendrites are moss- or tree-like pseudofossils on the margins of rock fissures and fossils, usually on the bedding surfaces of platy limestones and sandstones. Mineral-rich water with high concentrations of iron and manganese has penetrated microscopic cavities between limestone layers, and diffusion-limited growth has created these brown iron and black manganese dendrites, which are often mistaken for fossil ferns or fossil moss.. This slab with manganese and iron dendrites comes from the lithographic limestones of Solnhofen.
  6. (First post so sorry if there are formatting errors) Yesterday I took my first fossil hunting trip ever and had some beginners luck! I went to Cory’s Lane in RI and stayed for about an hour and a half. I found a few pieces (pics below) that I’m really proud of. I’m not sure if the large one with big lines in it is a fossil so if anyone knows that would be great. All that said, I still have no idea what I did right (or what I was doing wrong). Some members told me that I should go for the dark grey shale and not the graphite-black stuff, which I tried to do. I was a
  7. While visiting in Rhode Island recently, my wife and I spent a few hours on the beach at the end of Corys Lane in Portsmouth. While it isn't one of the most productive sites I've had the pleasure of mucking around in, I always feel at home at the edge of the sea. It's a bit of a challenge to find any reasonably well-preserved fossils here, but the challenge just makes it all the more enjoyable. While my wife wandered away, deserting me once again for the lure of an ocean beach, I spread out a square of 4-mil plastic in the always futile attempt to keep the graphite-infused beach gravel off yet
  8. I've spent some time gathering at the plant layer locally. I was able to pry behind the layered shale and pull out some larger pieces unbroken, and also split them. The layer is a delight, just about any piece I recover has some sort of plant impression on it. Immediately below the layered shale there is a more nodular type of rock that no longer breaks apart in neat and tidy planes. So whatever environmental change happened, it happened right at this layer. The first one was a really long and well defined fern frond. The carbon is all still in place. I want to create a parallel cu
  9. Imagine working for a year in a small college science department and there was a room you vaguely knew was there but didn’t have the keys to and never saw anyone going in or out. Then one day, campus grounds workers open the door, and you inquire what is going on. You discover it is an old earth science storage room (earth science hadn’t been taught there in many years) and everything is to be discarded the next day into the dumpster to make room for some new purpose. It’s a room about 15 feet by 20feet packed with boxes on shelves filling the space up to the ceiling. It is a dusty disordered
  10. JurassicMeasures

    Fossil Sites in Western PA?

    Greetings, I’ve recently gotten back into prospecting fossils and I’m looking for some suggestions on sites to visit in western Pennsylvania. I frequently visit Ambridge PA to find fern and Calamite fossils from the Mahoning fm and would like to find more. I also would like to find fossils of early Permian (tetrapods, plants, or invertebrates). I hear that Washington county (south of Pittsburgh) has some great spots and would like to know if it were true. I also would like to show some of my findings from Ambridge as well. Note: I’d like this to be suggested places not j
  11. I took a half dozen trips out to Schuylkill County this summer with the kids. We looked through Mohantango and Llewellyn rocks at various locations. These are some of my personal favorites:
  12. CamelbackMike

    McAdoo PA

    Found with the typical ferns found at McAdoo. Is this a seed (or spore) or just some kind of concretion?
  13. I found this little fern at the North Attleboro fossil site, and I cannot seem to put an ID on it. The leaves seem to be confluent, so i’m thinking maybe a juvenile Alethopteris or some other Pteridospermatophyte
  14. It's been a long time since I've written a trip report. Not that I wasn't hiking, I was hiking like mad and finding stuff. Just didn't get around to documenting in the latter part of 2020. Too much craziness. A couple of days ago, I went in search of an extremely elusive shale formation, that contains some of the loveliest ferns I have seen. My records show I specifically planned 13 hikes last year trying to find another exposure. That was over 100 miles of fruitless searching. Zero. Zilch. Well, two days ago I found another small exposure. Scenic photos of the journey
  15. I recently found several fossil plant impressions inside nodules from Indiana coal mine spoil dumps. It is Pennsylvanian age approximately 300 mya. Please help identify the specimens to genus, and species if possible. Thanks!
  16. I'm going to be taking a drive this year from Pittsburgh to Charlottesville to SE Kentucky, to Knoxville, TN to catch some of the autumn foliage, and was wondering if anyone had any suggestion on fossilized foliage outcrops or spoils piles. I'm trying to focus on ferns and other plants, as I've collected a lot of marine fossils previously and want to get some new types of specimens. I've seen some stuff online about Ambridge, PA and Big Hill in KY, but haven't been able to find too many other public spots besides that. Just wondering if anyone had any suggestions or recommendations. Than
  17. Steveosaurus

    Fossils from the new guy

    I'm brand new to Fossil Forum, and can't afford the big splashy wall display fossils, so my "collection" is modest, but it's a start. I have three of these fern plates from St. Clair, PA, and two diplomystus fish fossils from the Green River formation in Wyoming.
  18. This is a trip I took last year as we decided to make the trek to Washington DC for our family trip. I would definitely recommend a trip there for the museums alone if anyone has been thinking of going. Even on our non fossil trips, I try to plan a fossil excursion or 2. We got to the site around 11am, and it was quite hot as it is out in the sun. I don't have any pictures of the site itself, but you basically park on the side of the road, and hop over a barrier, and you are right there. Thank you @minnbuckeye for recommendations on parking as safety is always paramount when the family is with
  19. Scylla

    Nodosaur Stomach Contents

    Amazing Nodosaur fossil from Alberta gives up secrets of dinosaur diets. They ate ferns and charcoal. https://phys.org/news/2020-06-scientists-armored-dinosaur-ate-meal.html
  20. thelivingdead531

    Help with fern ID’s please

    Sorry to throw all of these at you guys, but my knowledge on plants is pretty nonexistent. If anyone can help with ID’s, I would really appreciate it. I bought them online (there are 14 pairs) and the seller told me they were collected in Vigo county, Indiana. I tried to do a little research on the area and it seems that maybe they came from Chieftain No. 20 mine, but I’m not 100% certain on that. I’ve numbered the photos to help make replies a little easier.
  21. I'm piling back in late from a fossil hunt and wanted to get this online. Found in a lower Pennsylvanian formation locally. Typically find cordaites and ferns in this formation. Today, this odd split pair caught my attention. For size reference the small calamite next to the split pair is a little over 5 cm long and 2 cm wide. Although not a great field shot I'm posting it up now in case someone can point me in a solid research direction. Part of me thinks cordaite but the unusual branching features on one side only are quite odd to me. Perhaps some sort of
  22. About a year ago, I took a trip to go collect at Corys Lane, Portsmouth, Rhode Island. Today I was super bored so I decided to finally unwrap and photo my collections! I have a vague idea of some of these, but a lot of them are well beyond my experience. I have positive/negative of two of these pieces. Any input on genera etc is welcome i have larger filesize photos of all these but i had to ensmallen them to fit here
  23. I have been slacking in my posts the past couple of trips, so I figured I would catch up. First up are carboniferous plant fossils from McIntyre Mountain, PA:
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