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Found 15 results

  1. Hi all, I'm an extreme amateur looking to try my hand at fossil hunting. I live in the triangle region of North Carolina and I've been trying to do some research about what I can expect to find. I live in an undeveloped area and have lots of woods and several creeks around that I was planning to explore. Does anyone have any suggestions about what I should look for or what there is to find in this area? Also, if there are specific things I should look for, what's the best method to find them?
  2. Is this a fossil?

    I'm not sure if this is a fossil, but i have been looking at this rock for a few years wondering if it may be a fossil or part of one. I have taken a few pictures to help anyone with potential ID. It is clearly quite porous, which makes me think it is either a fossil or an old bone that has been weathered, but then it almost seems like there are some rocks in it. Any ID help is appreciated.
  3. Post Oak Creek - First trip - Need Help

    So my 8 year old son and I did our first ever trip to go find fossils. Attached is what we found in our very untrained 2 hour trip! Haha I literally have no experience outside of reading on this forum from time to time. We may have just picked up some rocks but they looked like fossils to us. I know most most of the teeth are probably goblin and I believe we found 2 Ptychodus. The main things I’m wondering about are the long piece slim piece next to the Ptychodus (possible whale tooth?), two vertebrae looking pieces, the egg shaped piece, and the white pieces. Not sure if they are bones of if they are just random trash we picked up thinking they were treasures. Haha All our tooth fragments Item on right? Egg shaped item Vertebrae? Vertebrae? Cant tell if this tooth is broken or just worn Cool little shell in a rock formation No clue? Looks like bones in rock but could be just river muck This looks like a little flipper but not sure
  4. Absolutely new to fossil hunting

    on this piece, there are several various fossils. I beleive they are all encased in this clay rock. Found in Dresden Tn 38225 in a old creek.
  5. Fun in Southern Ohio!

    Howdy All! Been a couple of months since I have posted anything. Work has kept me more than busy with travel. BUT, I wanted to share a quick day trip to my dig site yesterday in northern Cincinnati. I explored far left into the hillside I am excavating to see on the surface what Gastropods, Brachiopods and Bryzoa I could see and I was happily surprised that I found the mother-load! This area of my site was covered by a lot of growth and the runoff of water was less than in other areas I have been digging. I have attached a couple of pics and some real quick finds I cleaned up last night... sorry about the pic quality, I do not own a fancy camera. I love when I am lined up with conference calls and I can enjoy my hobby why listening to statistical analysis (actually mostly ignoring). I will try to save more pics in the comment sections. One specimen has me confused. I found a number of trilobite pieces throughout my day and collected around 25 hash plates with several in them. I have yet to clean them up. But pictured below (if it lets me) is what appears to be the bottom portion of a trilobite but I'm unsure.
  6. How an Amateur Collector Changed Paleontology Forever To those of The Fossil Forum, I wish to share with you the story of Maiasaura peeblesorum and Marion Brandvold, both good mothers. Maiasaura was discovered forty years ago in June of 1978; this is the month and year of the Maiasaura. Marion and her son, David Trexler, found fossils fascinating long before Jurassic Park popularized dinosaurs. They would often take a vehicle out and go prospecting in their backyard geologic formation known as the Two Medicine. One hot summer evening when walking back to the vehicle, Marion took a small detour and came upon some tiny fossilized bones. In 1937, the Trexlers had opened a rock and jewelry store, and over the years had created a successful jewelry manufacturing and wholesale business along with their ranching interest. However, Marion's heart was always with the land and the animals, and when her husband passed away, she opened a retail store for her merchandise rather than try to keep up with the wholesale business. That way, she still had time for the ranching and rock hunting that she loved. Marion and David had discovered a partial dinosaur in 1971, and they traveled the State of Montana to compare it to all the wonderful previous discoveries they had read about that had been made in Montana. To their surprise, the only dinosaur on display in the entire State was in a little museum in the basement of the high school in Ekalaka, Montana. It had been assembled by a couple of ranchers who had worked with paleontologists from elsewhere who had come to the State, collected, and left. Chagrined that nothing was left behind when professional work was done, they decided to start a small museum in the back of the family store. The goal was to display a dinosaur skeleton from their local area. After all, if ranchers from Ekalaka could do it, so could they. As far as professional training was concerned, Marion had to rely on her familiarity with the ecology of the modern world, as she had no formal education on the subject. However, a ranch foreman when she was young had taught her the art of tracking, and had shown her how each organism interacted with other organisms and its environment. So, when looking for fossil skeletons, Marion expected to see very young and very old animal pieces, but not much in-between. On the fateful evening mentioned previously, Marion, Dave, and Dave's wife, Laurie, were out collecting what they believed to be a fairly complete duckbilled dinosaur skeleton. It is a long, tedious job collecting all the bones present in a dinosaur, and they had uncovered 15 or so at that point. As tools were being put away, Marion went for a little walk, and when Dave and Laurie caught up with her, she was sitting on a small mound of dirt with a big smile on her face. She said, "look what I found!" She was holding several baby dinosaur vertebrae. Within a few minutes, they had found many more, and Dave had found a piece of a jaw with obviously duckbilled dinosaur teeth attached. However, the entire jaw section could be covered by a nickel! They had a baby dinosaur to go with their adult in the museum. Bill Clemens, a mammal paleontologist from Berkely, had stopped in Marion's shop on his way to dig on fossil fish with some colleagues, and was impressed with what had been done in creating a fossil museum without any formal training. At the fish site, he encouraged Jack Horner, then a fossil preparator at Princeton, and Jack's friend Bob Makela, a high school teacher from Rudyard, Montana, to stop at Marion's shop and see the displays. A few days later, Jack and Bob left the fish site and visited Marion's rock shop and museum. Jack introduced himself to Marion, and for the next few hours, they had a wonderful time going over the specimens Marion had on display. Jack then asked if she had anything else, and she showed him a couple of the vertebrae she had picked up from the baby site. Jack's interest was immediately piqued, and he asked if she had more. Marion directed him across the street to where Dave was reassembling the baby bones they had collected. Jack realized immediately that Marion and Dave had something they didn't understand. He asked, "do you know what you have here?", and Dave replied, "Obviously not, since you are so excited." The concept of babies and old animals dying and being preserved in the fossil record, it turned out, was only partially correct. While that cycle probably did occur, baby bones were generally not preserved in the fossil record. The bones Bob and Jack were staring at turned out to be the first baby dinosaur remains known from North America. Jack asked to be allowed to borrow the fossils in order to write them up in a formal publication. The bones were carefully wrapped and placed in a coffee can, and Jack transported them to Princeton. A visit to the site was also in order, and Marion and Dave took Jack and Bob out to the site. Dave also showed Jack a poorly preserved skull that Laurie had discovered, and Jack offered to try to remove it and clean it up for display in Marion's museum. However, after a few years and the specimen was recovered and prepared, it turned out to be the type skull for Maiasaura, and Laurie donated it to Museum of the Rockies, where Jack was working by then. Baby dinosaurs together in a nest past hatching showed a totally different picture of what dinosaurs were thought to be. Jack returned for many years, and eventually the Museum of the Rockies purchased the land where the babies were discovered. The area has become a mecca for paleontological research. The discovery of all this led to a massive shift in the view paleontologist and indeed science as a whole had for extinct animals and modern reptiles. A realization occurred that dinosaurs were truly living, breathing, majestic animals who cared for their young, much like the life we often see around us today. Hungry and thirsty, often looking for a mate, just trying to stay alive in an unforgiving world were the dinosaurs. Far from terrible lizards, they were much like animals and we humans are today. All this came from Marion’s tiny little find. It was her tiny find which led to a surge of interest and public attention. It was her tiny find which started Jack Horner’s career. It was her tiny find that indirectly caused Spielberg to help create Jurassic Park which in turn inspired many into paleontology and many more into other sciences. Those she indirectly inspired have contributed a near inconceivable amount to mankind through science. They range from medical researchers curing diseases, to those looking for extraterrestrial life, and all the way down to myself. A great many started their interest in the sciences with an early love of fossils and dinosaurs. A love Marion Branvold started and continues through her past contribution. Sadly, I never had the opportunity to meet her and she passed away in 2014, at the age of 102. Over the course of my short time in paleontology, I had the honor to stand where her tiny find was made. As the search for more discoveries continues I have been privileged to search with both Jack Horner and Dave Trexler. In the great quest for knowledge, she played her part well, now it is for us to carry on with the next act. What a massive contribution from an amateur and so tiny a find. As others ogle over the next major discovery, keep all this in mind and tell us more of your own tiny find. Eric P. Made with great assistance by David Trexler
  7. It's great to see that this board is so active, and that there's such a good, positive atmosphere here for amateur-professional interaction. So, in that spirit, it seems that there's scope for a new permanent topic. There is a wealth of extraordinary fossils in the collections here, and we've seen the rewards that a good collaboration can bring in the gallery... and there are probably also a lot of palaeontologists, around the world, who would love something specific to work on that is a bit inaccessible for them. There may also be people working on monographs of particulalr groups from particular areas. Why not give them a place to advertise their needs? There's also the issue of collectors/amateurs who have found something they feel ought to be described, but can't find anyone who wants to do it. A parallel thread showcasing available new fossils might also be a really good avenue to go down. At the moment, the site probably isn't on the radar of most palaeontological researchers (including some of the amateur ones), but there are places like the Palaeonet listserver where this board could be brought to their attention. It could really start building some hefty bridges, if the idea takes off. I've certainly got a 'want' or two that I could throw in to begin with! Is this a route the forum would like to go down, at least to try it? I'm happy to announce it on Palaeonet, if so!
  8. I am definitely an amateur when it comes to collecting and need some advice: I recently purchased my first 'larger' Spinosaurus tooth from a small gem/fossil shop in Seattle. The owner told me that it had no repairs or restorations, and that it of course came from Morocco. I tested the tooth under a UV flashlight and there were no anomalies, but I just wanted some more experienced opinions. The enamel looks good- no apparent cracks or suspicious color variations, root still has some of the matrix on it, but the tip seems a little suspicious to me... maybe I'm just being paranoid, but I have read so much about fake fossils and just want to be sure! Let me know what you guys think- Thanks!
  9. I preped this cute partial trilobite last month. This bug was from by secret Santa in Canada . . . I worked with engraving pen! Not a perfect tool for prep but also not bad for starter.(Sadly, I don't have enough money for air scribe and compresor.) . . . After prep. REALLY amateur job... white spots are my mistakes.... I hope I can do better next time. I believe the more practice, the better.... Thanks!
  10. Can I keep 'em?

    Ok, so, I bought 2 tons of rock from a local supplier. I live in Florida but the rock is from Alabama and it literally has Carboniferous plant fossils falling out of it,it's like every third rock has well defined fossil formations. Now my questions are... Do I need a FL state fossil license to keep them? And... Am I supposed to report them to the state of FL or anyone for that matter? I know I need to have the license to dig or hunt in Florida. But this rock was bought and paid for ($309 for 4300 lbs) and it did not originate from the state of Florida. Any advice is welcome and thank you in advance for even reading my post.
  11. Walton on the Naze

    Is there a certain area I should be looking in or to avoid when looking for fossils at Walton on the Naze? I've never been to the area before so I'm unsure of what to expect, also I'm a complete amateur so it's mainly for fun. I would like to try to come back with something, even if it's small. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
  12. Fossil Site Recs in Japan?

    Hi, I'm super casual about fossil hunting - I'll do it when I get the chance and enjoy it but I'm afraid it's not my life's passion (yet) My usual haunts are Walton-on-the-Naze and other nearby sites, the kind you can wander about and either pick up fragments or break rocks without too much extra equipment. And now I'm in Japan. I've come to Iwate, a prefecture on the northern end of the main island, and will be living here for a while. So how can I find out what sites are near me, and does anyone know the area or have any recommendations? Google is turning up sites that are either museum-only, commercially excavated and private areas, or a fossil park on a different island at the other end of the country.
  13. The Rio Puerco Valley was my introduction to fossils. For many years now, I have scoured its Late Cretaceous shales and sandstones in search of ammonites. Somewhere along the way, my fascination with the ornament grew into an investigation of its enviornment. Last week at the New Mexico Geologic Society's Spring meeting (program), I made my first venture into the world of paleontological science. With the help of Dr. Spencer Lucas of the New Mexico Museum of Natural History, I presented a poster/abstract (Foley & Lucas 2017.pdf) exhibiting my ideas. I received some criticism for incorporating ammonite ornament and caught some grief for including a labeled map...otherwise, this was an amazing learning experience and I am ready to move forward. Back to the rocks!...I have a paper to write. Blue Hill Shale: Spathites puercoensis: Prionocyclys hyatti: Coilopoceras springeri:
  14. Opinions Needed Please!

    Hello Everyone, I'm an avid paleophile and social researcher doing work on natural history museums. I am interested in talking to people who love fossils! I am doing a survey and want to invite you to take it: Survey for the public: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/DFX55S6 Survey for the paleontology community: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/67RNCMW You might fall into both categories! Please feel free to take them both if you want to. Only 10 questions apiece. The purpose of this survey is to ask people what they know about fossil collecting for commercial purposes, and what they think about this. I really want to get more perspectives on this issue. Ultimately I will be presenting the data at a conference and then publishing it open-access. I want to bring "amateurs" and the public into the conversation about the market! As a museum professional, I don't think my motivations and thoughts on this topic reflect any of those currently being circulated by the media, and I think it's simply wrong to leave people out of this conversation. Thanks for your time, I appreciate it! - Francis B. PS you can send me a private message if you want to talk about this further, I am all ears.
  15. Hello everyone! Me and my girlfriend have recently been very interested in the study of fossils since we had took the adventure to the Dinosaur Valley State Park. We finally went off on our own for the first time today and found some very awesome pieces of petrified wood and had the chance to chip out an awesome indention of a giant shell (still trying to figure out what it could possibly have been). Would anyone out there in the area know of any areas which would be fun to go out to and check out? Thanks in advance!
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