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  1. Hi all! You know I visit my favorite Volga river site (Ulyanovsk Oblast) more or less often, but this time I decided to give a try to another well-known Jurassic-Cretaceous site on the Volga river, located in the nearby Samara Oblast (city of Syzran). It's famous for its iridescent ammonites as well as marine reptile finds. I hoped to discover a real alternative to the Ulyanovsk site particularly as the conditions are very similar: surface collecting on river bank. Here the Ulyanovsk site is to the north, Syzran to the south. The latter is home to two distinct locations
  2. RuMert

    Russian fossil sites

    Hi all In this topic I'll give a brief overview of Russian fossil sites and typical fossils. I focus on the Jurassic as my main field of interest. The method used here is analyzing regional and temporary breakdowns of the number of specimens, shown by amateurs on Russian fossil resources, mainly ammonit.ru (about 40.000 finds). Unfortunately the overview has a inevitable bias towards the sites and fossil types attractive to the largest number of amateurs and downgrades those that are remote, less popular or less productive. The material is presented from an amateur's point of
  3. Hi all! Those who follow my reports know I was planning another trip to Ulyanovsk in spring. Well, here is the report, in continuation of 1, 2 and 3. This time I was on the shore for 3 days. In short, the weather was fine, the ice abundant, the competition high and the finds scarce. The trip felt more like an extravagant outing than a productive fossil hunt
  4. Hi all! I was finally able to visit the Volga site thanks to a water level/ good weather window. The journey was mostly a success, I got a better understanding of the site, used new means of transportation and examined more of the shoreline. Among the finds were two dozens of marine reptile verts and bone fragments and LOTS of ammonites and other mollusks. Unfortunately the river level was not low enough, 1m higher than during my 1st trip, 0,5m lower than in the 2nd. But it was at least possible to walk the shore. There's still a lot more to do, but now I have a pretty clear idea how to m
  5. Hi all! Following the first topic I'll show you another fossil layer in that same location, Epivirgatites nikitini ammonite zone. It's the lowest of the three layers in Fili Park, relates to the middle Tithonian (Volgian, upper Jurassic) and is known for big ammonites and vertebrate remains. It's the last remaining accessible site in the region where you can count on finding Jurassic vertebrates. The finds are stable, but small, scarce and involve sifting.
  6. Hi everybody! Today I’ll show you yet another distinct fossil hunting location within the city limits. It’s situated in the south-east in the direct vicinity of the Moscow ring road (city and regional border). The outcrops are located on the banks of the shallow Shmelovka (Shmelyevka) river, effectively a small fordable creek.
  7. ...Down to Gorky( Brateyevsky) park... Hi all! It is time to introduce you to the famous Panderi zone of the Moscow fossils. It is named after Dorsoplanites panderi ammonite (middle Volgian/Tithonian, Upper Jurassic), which in turn got its name from Heinz Christian Pander. It consists of numerous cast iron-like (black, heavy, solid but fragile) separate concretions containing mostly ammonites and bivalves. The fossils from the Panderi layer are grim, black, rough and depressive (in line with this winter).The zone is present throughout Moscow but becomes most accessible in the
  8. RuMert

    Unknown Russian echinoid

    What do you think it is? The definition I got on the local forum is "conditionally classified as Plegiocidaris" Guides/handbooks on Moscow Mezozoic (unfortunately mostly outdated) list 5 genera: Echinobrissus, Rhabdocidaris, Acrocidaris, Holectypus and Cidaris. For this and neighboring stratigraphic zones Echinobrissus and Rhabdocidaris only, mainly the latter. Both are defined by spines, sometimes isolated plates
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