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Found 354 results

  1. Unidentified Brachiopods

    I've had some difficulty narrowing down the identity on some assorted brachiopods. The diagnostic features may not be preserved but I figured I'd post them here to see if anyone knew. @Tidgy's Dad Any ideas? The first is a single large valve from the Warsaw Formation in Fenton, Missouri (The old Meramec Bridge site). I've been able to track down most species reported from here and identify everything else but this one is harder. The wear doesn't help. The second are a couple o Echinoconchidae valve casts in chert from a creek in Lincoln County, Missouri. It could be residual chert. The area is otherwise Ordovician. 2.8 cm width x 2.5 cm height. 3.8 cm x 3.2 cm
  2. 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 follow starting with walking uphill on an Ordovician rock bed The Ordovician transitioned into this Silurian bed with Devonian formations rising above it on the left Although fairly stumble-free walking this was relatively steep. That day I ascended 2,800 ft with my big pack full of tools, food and drinks. A nice shattered chert nodule in the Devonian. Just to show not everything has fierce thorns here, some 'Cushion Buckwheat'
  3. Spiny Fern Glen ID

    During my third trip to a Fern Glen outcropping, I came across this specimen. It doesn't really resemble anything else I've found there. Luckily the "spines" are pretty sturdy, and I didn't break any of them when digging it out. Any ideas?
  4. Mississippian Coral ID Help

    I found this coral several months ago in the Late Mississippian Mauch Chunk Group of West Virginia. I admit that it is a worn example, but it is the only Carboniferous tabulate coral that I have found so far. My initial guess is Michelinia sp. Is there enough there to make an identification? Any help is greatly appreciated!
  5. Every now and then I find something odd on the ground in the backcountry. Do not feel this is a fossil. At first glance I thought this was just some siliceous ooze with intricate folds. At second glance I noted the broken surfaces were not conchoidal as one would expect with silicate materials. It almost appears like extremely fine-grained basalt on the broken ends Specimen is 1.5" (38mm) long and 1.25" (32mm) wide. Thickness is 3/8" (8-9mm) I'll call this the top view. Primarily very dark black Bottom view has a decided reddish cast in places. Note the broken end on the left. Another broken section on the side. Small vesicles. Some strange inclusion on the left. Another exposed side section If it is igneous in origin that would be interesting because the closest igneous activity is about 70 miles away and would imply transported in by ancient peoples. Any geologic thoughts to send my way? Thank you, Kato
  6. Wayne's Carboniferous

    When it comes to fossils, I am a generalist by nature. I haven't met a fossil that I didn't like! However, in an attempt to narrow my focus a bit, I have decided to take a cue from Adam ( @Tidgy's Dad ) and start this thread. I hope to showcase some of my collection, but more importantly have a central place to post IDed specimens, information I have found regarding them, and/or ask for help with IDs. Hopefully other's will get enjoyment from seeing the specimens and potentially learn a thing or two. So come along on my journey through the Carboniferous! If you haven't had the pleasure of getting lost in the Cambrian, Ordovician, or Silurian with Adam, you are doing yourself a disservice! I highly recommend his below threads. Adam's Ordovician Adam's Silurian Adam's Cambrian Now, let's go! Kentucky is known far and wide by fossil collectors for being within the Cincinnati Arch, and having wonderful Ordovician fossils, but what many fail to realize is that the Ordovician makes up a small percent of Kentucky's exposed strata. By far the most represented time period is the Carboniferous. With Central to Western Kentucky being mostly Mississippian in age, and Eastern Kentucky (and part of Western) being predominantly Pennsylvanian. There is a reason that coal is big business here! A simplified version of Kentucky's geological survey map, but it gives you a good idea of the distribution of what can be found. Image borrowed from: Bryson, Lindsey & Gomez-Gutierrez, I.C. & Hopkins, T.C.. (2012). Development of a new durability index for compacted shale. Engineering Geology. s 139–140. 66–75. 10.1016/j.enggeo.2012.04.011. An adaptation of the KGS map found here https://www.uky.edu/KGS/geoky/index.htm I'm lucky enough to be within an hours drive from most represented time periods. Excluding the Tertiary/Cretaceous and Quaternary, but I live in the Mississippian area and find myself hunting that time period more often than not. The Mississippian here is mostly marine in nature with brachiopods, corals, bryozoans, and the like, being the norm. While the Pennsylvanian is a mixed bag of marine and terrestrial life. More information regarding the geology of Kentucky can be found at the Kentucky Geological Survey website here. I would also recommend the open access papers below regarding the Carboniferous and it's invertebrate fauna. I have not studied terrestrial and vertebrate life much yet, but will showcase those finds and related research material as they come. Mississippian Fauna of Kentucky Pennsylvanian Invertebrate Fauna of Kentucky The fossils will come next, and I plan to post a new one regularly (Daily? Weekly? Monthly?) as time permits. So sit back, grab some popcorn, and enjoy the adventure. Carboniferous here we come!
  7. Weird Kentucky Cave Fossil

    This fossil(?) was found on the roof of a cave in the Renault or Ste. Genevieve Limestones in Kentucky. Mississipian period. I apologize for no scale. It is about 6 inches long I talked to some usgs fossil guys but they weren't sure. They thought it could be from an armored fish. It is unlike any fossil I've ever seen. I originally thought it was just chert, but on closer look, it appeared to have bilateral symmetry. It seems like whatever was in there was replaced by the chert. Although, I'm not really familiar with how fossils form. EDIT: the fossil was very much 3D. The part closest to my finger, facing perpendicular to the wall appears to be be concave.
  8. Circular Branching fossil

    Could this be a sponge? Note the radial structure and the occasional branching rods. Collected in Missouri, but location and age are unknown. Also, the specimen is sawn to 3/4" thick and the fossil doesn't extend into the sawn area! There is a lot of tiny crinoidal hash in the matrix rock. The light blue grid is one inch.
  9. An Autumn Road Trip

    In September, the desire to collect the Burlington Formation, Mississippian of Iowa got the best of me, “forced” my truck to make a little road trip down that way. The trip was about 4 hours, necessitating an overnight stay. Covid was running rampant, compelling me to sleep in the back of my pickup and eat out of a cooler full of food instead of motels and restaurants. This left a 64 year old man a bit stiff in the morning. The nice thing about the Burlington, it did not tax my body too much, allowing me hunt my allotted 8 hours with ease. Normally the Burlington is searched for crinoid specimens, but on this trip, my goal was to find the fish layer and come home with shark specimens to prep out. Success was had and I even stumbled on a few nice crinoids too, as a forum member found out The stark contrast of the dark fish parts can be seen against the whitish matrix FULL of crinoidal debris in this chunk. Extracting the teeth was very difficult due to their fragile nature. Many nice specimens were ruined as a result of my inadequate techniques. But I am proud of what I salvaged! After completing my preps, I placed the teeth in some plastic sleeves. However, I developed such a liking to the teeth that I couldn’t just bag them and file them away in my barn. So I decided to make an Iowa tooth display out of them, something that I can hopefully use on occasion for educational purposes. The result of my project is shown in the next photo. I used a red blanket from under the Christmas tree as a background. Not sure I like the Santa red so included another without it. Plus, as always, I forgot a scale!! Now I will show closeups of most specimens and attempt a CRUDE ID on them. First Cladodus???
  10. Nodules in Redwall Limestone, Central AZ

    The photo shows several nodules embedded in Redwall Limestone (Mississippian) along highway 89a west of Jerome, Arizona. Also in this layer are crinoids, brachiopods and solitary rugose corals. I think I've read about these in the dim, dusty past, and I seem to recall that they are not fossils, but some other geological phenomenon. Any help?
  11. The colder days of late has allowed me to work on the Burlington matrix that I brought home this summer. It has revealed some real treasures, at least for me. But I am stymied on a few finds and look for some opinions of forum members. 1. A few questions on the first piece. My goal was to clean up a large piece of ??? Shark spine? While cleaning, two teeth were uncovered. Here is the "backside" tooth. Now the "front side" tooth Initially just the tip of the tooth was showing, but as I progressed with cleaning, this "moustache" was exposed with the tooth at the very tip. I am very curious to understand this as well as what the long linear specimen is above it. 2. Looks like a trilobite eye but I will venture some type of shark tooth?? 3. The matrix where these specimens were found is white. So any time a dark spot is seen, a fossil exists, at least most of the time. Here is a dark item I assumed when I started its exposure was a tooth of some kind. But I concluded, just a "rock". After seeing it sit on the workbench for a few days, I kept thinking about the LACK of any matrix that wasn't white. So my thoughts went to the possibility of a coprolite. I will tag @GeschWhat for her opinion too. 4. Open to suggestions on this SMALL tubular structure. 5. I couldn't find a confident ID on this tooth. 6. Again, I have no clue on this one. It looks like Mickey Mouse ears, but I can't believe it since this was no where near Disneyland!
  12. It reminds me of a soccer ball but very small. I was thinking some sort of coral that I haven't seen yet in my research. (I am new to this but I did try to research)
  13. Wondering what this might be as well

    Wondering if this is some sort of sea-star sponge? From what I researched?
  14. Rugose Corals? Mississippian Redwall Limestone

    These fossils are fairly common in the Mississippian redwall limestones of central Arizona. I believe they are rugose corals. Is this correct?
  15. It was about a month ago that our Fossil Club was going to meet at a Devonian location in central Iowa. The first cold weather of the season hit just then and required heavy coveralls to stay warm, so my sights were not set too high for this trip. I decided to make it a 2 day hunt and sneak down to SE Iowa the first day. My goal was to attempt to find some shark teeth from the upper Burlington Formation. The teeth from this location are extremely fragile and will turn to powder if touched with anything but kid gloves. This is a lesson that I have learned from multiple times collecting with little to show for my effort. IF I found specimens, I planned to leave them in the matrix and stabilize before transporting them home. Now I needed to find some! While exploring the Mississippian age rock, I did come across a few specimens that I brought home that were not teeth. A few representative Brachiopods A brachiopod in matrix that I still am not comfortable on its ID As always, I must always bring a rugosa coral home. Burlington limestone is known for its crinoidal content. Here are some typical finds. Like the rugosa, I still can not pass up crinoid stems. The next picture shows the unique twisting stem of a Platycrinites. Now some crinoid cups. I love geodized fossils and this is the first crinoid cup that I have found in such condition! Though the picture is hard to see, 4 different crinoid cups are on this piece of matrix. Another first for me. The next cup is a new one for me. If someone recognizes it, let me know!! Finally, the last crinoid!!!!!!
  16. Took a recent collecting trip to a site that preserves stem-tetrapod, anthracosaur (reptile-like amphibian) footprints from the Mississippian subperiod. As seen in the photos, it's fairly common for these to show an overlap of front and back (manus and pes) prints. As part of the agreement for site access, I can't provide any info on geologic formation or location, but it's not the Union Chapel Mine or any other well-known Carboniferious ichnofossil site. Paleontologist Alfred Romer coined the term "Romer's gap" to describe the lack of tetrapod fossils in the earlies Carboniferous Period (roughly 360 to 345 mya). In recent years, new finds have been made that help fill in this gap, and an internet search on Romer's gap will provide a variety of papers describing interesting worldwide Late Devonian/early Mississippian tetrapod fossil finds.
  17. Its been a long time since I last posted any finds, so I thought I'd show you folks what Ive been finding so far. Ive been out a lot this year, and have done quite a bit of exploring. I haven't taken pics of everything yet but Ill add to this as I do. This past summer I took a trip to west Tennessee to an exposure of the Coffee Sands, a Late Cretaceous formation. I was able to find the site, but unfortunately, I found no fossils there. Luckily there was an exposure of the Lower Devonian Birdsong Shale nearby! This site exposes the 'brachiopod zone' which is the bottom of the formation. So as you can probably guess, brachiopods were every where! By far the most common was Atrypa “reticularis” , they were all over the place. Discomyorthis oblata was also common Heres a favorite of mine Kozlowskiellina tennesseenis, They are very decorative. cont...
  18. Hi everyone, its been a while since I posted here so wanted to share some of my favorite finds from the past few months. Ive mainly been hunting in the marine Blackhall Limestone at various sites across the Midland Valley of Scotland. Although there are several fossiliferous marine limestone and shale bands of similar age and depositional environment in the Midland Valley, the Blackhall seems to be by far the most productive and also tends to have the best preservation. Ive mainly been looking for chondrichthyan teeth, crinoid cups and jellyfish so I'll post these first, I have had a few nice finds of other invertebrate groups recently though so I'll get some pics of these shortly. First up, the jellyfish. This is the largest Ive found so far at 80mm across. Another larger specimen at 60mm across. An average sized one at 32mm. And one of the smallest so far at 21mm.
  19. Hi everyone, These unidentified specimens were collected in Union County, Illinois. It's from Mississippian strata, likely the Ste. Genevieve Limestone or St. Louis Limestone. I haven't been able to track down a proper map of this quadrangle yet. The smaller specimens resemble mound bryozoa like Prasopora and the cups of all of them display concentric layers like related bryozoans. There aren't any pores visible so I've been thinking about bisecting one of the smaller specimens to see if any radiating zooecia are visible. What does everyone else think? Does anyone have any idea on what they are?
  20. Need Your Help!!!

    Two weeks ago, I traveled to Central (Devonian) and SE Iowa (Mississippian) for a little fossil hunt. It was very successful and I will complete a trip report soon. In the meantime, it would thrill me to understand a few unknowns from the trip. First of all, the Mississippian, Burlington Formation: 1. and 2. 2. is a brachiopod that I could not find in the lists of brachiopods from the Burlington Formation. 3. There were many of these present in a certain layer of rock. Very circular with longitudinal striations. All roughly an inch in length. 4. Probably my most confusing specimen. It looks just like the little sanddollars I find in Florida. Probably a crinoid piece, but worth the asking!!!! 5. These "trace fossils" were very evident in a certain layer of the Burlington. I am open for suggestions. Now a few Devonian specimens to get your thoughts on. 6. This was found in with many Platyrachella iowensis, a long winged spirifer. This spirifer has SHORT wings. A different species or broken wings?? 7. Finally, I can not find mention of this winged bivalve, Cedar Valley Formation. Thanks for any help you can provide me!!! Mike Sorry!! I forgot a few, all Mississippian. 8. What could the little green discs be that I often find inside the very white crinoidal limestone? 9. This reminds me a bit of a cephalopod but its hollowed out area is on a sharp slant, too much for cephalopod. It does not image well. My apologies. 10. Finally, research pinpoints the fenstrate bryozoan on the left as Hemitrypa. Is the one on the right Archimedes? I am so used to just finding the corkscrew. I promise I am done now!
  21. Hi all, I collected this lovely crinoid calyx stuck in a Favosites sp. from the Fern Glen Formation in Imperial, Missouri (Mississippian, Osagean Series). My guess is Platycrinus stellatus (based on Weller, Stuart, Kinderhook faunal studies; V, The fauna of the Fern Glen Formation. Geol. Soc. Am., Bull., vol. 20, 265-:332, (1909)) but I would prefer some more opinions since I'm new to paleozoic strata. On that note I would also welcome learning references on crinoids, especially regarding the Mississippian and Pennsylvanian. Thanks for any help or information. -Tom