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Found 91 results

  1. Hello, Last saturday I had a trek in a mountain area in the northen Italy alps and I found this fossil (I'm not actaully 100% sure that it's a fossil, but I don't know what else could it be). It looks like an echinoderm fossil to me, but I'd like to ask your opinion about it. Thanks a lot, have a nice day. Oz
  2. Saturday dawned a bit chilly, but the sun peeped out from lingering clouds to brighten a stellar day of fossil prospecting in the Ordovician bedrock of central Pennsylvania. We strolled along the limestone ground, like beachcombers peering in shallow shore waters, when my relatively newbie friend exclaimed, "That looks like a starfish!" Bingo...Indeed it was an Asteroidea. I'm guessing it's genus Urasterella, and I wonder how rare is this find. The specimen's longest ray is 1.75 inches (4.45 cm). Photos are the rock slab and a closeup of the mostly complete starfish, as found.
  3. Tiny Sea Urchin

    From the album Delaware Fossils

    So sweet! This is a very rare Cretaceous echinoid (sea urchin), Boletechinus. They are typically no more than a couple mm in diameter. This one is shown next to a pencil eraser. Most of the ones in the Smithsonian's collection come from sand and silt removed for the creation and maintenance of a canal, which exposed fossils well below the surface. This one comes from New Castle County, Delaware.
  4. For the Columbus Day weekend my girlfriend planned a three-day trip down to Southwestern Virginia as a birthday present to me. The plan was to do a little sightseeing, go on some hikes, enjoy the fall foliage, and, most importantly, collect some fossils. Unfortunately Hurricane Delta had other plans for us. As the weekend approached it looked like the entire weekend would be soaked with rain. We tried to change our reservations, but we were not allowed to postpone. Not knowing what to expect for the weekend, we made our trip. Sunday was to be my big day of fossil collecting. It was also the day that Hurricane Delta was expected to pass through Southwestern Virginia... Lucky for me, luck turned out to be on my side (at least in part). I had an all-day fossil trip planned, but due to the weather, I had to cut the trip in half. After a later start to the day than I had hoped for, we headed towards two sites that I had identified for the day. Both were exposures of the Middle Ordovician Benbolt Formation. A few showers on the drive but for the most part the rain held off while we collected. Our first stop was a large, open road cut. The limestone there is just covered with brachiopods, trilobite pieces and bryozoa I thought the number and orientation of all of the bryozoa in this hash plate were very cool There were a lot of bryozoa at this site. Some small and some large, like these pieces of Mesotrypa sp. and Batostoma sevieri My favorite bryozoan found here though was Ceramoporella sp. This piece of Corynotrypa inflata comes in a close second. This bryozoan is encrusting and was often found on the inside of loose valves of Strophomena sp. I am still trying to identify all of the brachiopods. I believe the left and bottom center ones in the second photo are Rafinesquina champlainensis while the right most one is Multicostella platys Another really interesting fossil was this undetermined sponge One of the unfortunate things about this site is that because it is so exposed, the fossils there weather very quickly. This is most apparent on all of the trilobite pieces. Here are two cephalons and a pygidium of Illaenus fieldi I think this is a right cheek and eye of Eoharpes sp. Here is an additional mystery trilobite piece
  5. Last month my dad and I took a four-day weekend trip to Western New York to visit some new fossil sites and to collect in the famous Beecher's Trilobite Beds. We had only once before been out to Western New York to collect fossils - a visit to Penn Dixie Fossil Park - so this time around we wanted to try out some different places that we had never collected in before. The trip was a lot of fun and I enjoyed putting my research skills to work in finding new places to visit. I greatly expanded my collection of Silurian and Devonian fossils and found quite a few things on my fossil bucket list. I am excited to hopefully make another trip out there soon and fortunately still have my list of potential stops to make. Thursday On Thursday we woke early and made the 6.5 hour drive towards Western New York. In preparing for the trip I spoke with @fossilcrazy who was kind enough to invite my dad and me to collect from some of the spoils piles on his property from the various fossil collecting trips he has made. I was really excited to explore his pile of Linton Coal as I have very few fish in my collection and even fewer Pennsylvanian marine fossils - one of the consequences of living near Eastern Pennsylvania is that you end up visiting a lot of Late Pennsylvanian Llewellyn Formation plant sites. @fossilcrazy is an amazing fossil collector and an even more incredible member of the fossil collecting community. I cannot say enough about his generosity and hospitality. We were all hoping that my dad and I could find an amphibian or complete fish fossil, but no luck. We found a few isolated Orthacanthus teeth and head spines and some isolated coelacanth scales and bones. Fortunately @fossilcrazy kindly gifted me some representative pieces to add to my collection. These fossils are from the Middle Pennsylvanian Upper Freeport Coal from Linton, Ohio. I highly recommend checking out some of the posts @fossilcrazy has made about his finds from the Linton Coal. They are amazing! Rhabdoderma elegans Here are some close-ups of this beautiful coelacanth head and tail Haplolepis sp. Orthocanthus compressus Teeth and Head Spine Conchostracans Death Plate After visiting with @fossilcrazy we made our way into Buffalo to visit Frank Lloyd Wright's Martin House. My dad is an architect and he really wanted to see the newly restored interior of the house. It is really a quite stunning home.
  6. The Day of The Echinoderm

    Firstly, a big THANK YOU to @Jeffrey P for hanging out with me for the day! What a knowledgeable, generous, and all around swell guy! If you ever get the opportunity to hunt with Jeff, I highly encourage you to. Jeff and I met at around 8:30 am, and after a quick transfer of his gear to my truck, we were off. We first drove about 45 minutes south to the small town of Wax, to hunt the Upper Mississippian. Specifically to look for blastoids and crinoid calyxes that were known to be found in the area. As it happens, luck was with us! Unfortunately, I didn't take the field pictures that I typically do. Due to the fact that I went swimming with my phone a month or so ago . I am down to using my wife's old phone that I found in the junk drawer (Yes Jeff, it's pink... ). I didn't take it out much to avoid the inevitable drop down the hill side. Especially since it doesn't even have a protective case... Jeff snapped a few pictures. Maybe he will chime in and add them when he is able. For the first few minutes we didn't find much besides crinoid stems, bryozoans, and the deflated or crushed brachiopods common to the site. The main species of brach found in the area doesn't seem to have fared well during the fossilization process. Finding a nice inflated one is a rarity. After a few minutes of adjusting our eyes to spot the small finds located here, we started to pick out the blastoids. Jeff was the first to find one, and gifted it to me as he had already collected a few on his previous trips here. Thanks Jeff for gifting me my first blastoid! Most of the blastoids, while small, were whole and nicely preserved. Here are a few examples. I did happen to find the largest blastoid from the site, and one of the larger ones Jeff had seen from here. Super pumped about this one! Crinoid calyx were also to be found here. We only found a few, but being that these were also a first for me, I was extremely excited to find them! The brachiopods I previously mentioned were abundant, and besides crinoid stems, were the most abundant fossil to be found here. Again, they are almost always deflated. Finding a nice inflated one would be a real treat. These other little Spirifer(?) brachiopods could also be found. Although they were more uncommon that the previous ones. They are very small and delicate. Often crumbling when trying to pick them up. Bivalves could be found here also, but were extremely rare. Jeff was excited to find a couple, but I struck out. Other things that could be found were crinoid stems, the odd solitary rugose coral, and of course the ever present bryozoans. We then headed to a site a few miles down the road in Leitchfield. Stay tuned!
  7. Brittle star real or forgery?

    Hello! This is an apparent “fossil” brittle star, looking much like those that come from the Ordovician of Morocco. However, these particular fossils are very often faked, and I have a strong gut feeling that this particular one has been carved into the matrix. What does everyone else think? For whatever reason that I can’t quantify this piece *looks* like a fake to me, especially due to the fact that it has a very distinctive obvious outline from an air tool, which often is a sign of carving, though that I’ve also often seen that done with genuine Knightia and such. There are a few things that may help indicate that it’s genuine, however, notably that fine details that would be difficult/too labor intensive to carve like “ribbing” on the arms and a “star” (like that on a sand dollar) in the middle of the body are visible. I’ve also already run a cotton swab with acetone over the body, which has not removed any color, so that may help rule out painting. But yes, my gut says it’s a carved forgery (or I guess to be nice you could say “replica”), interested in what everyone else thinks because I’m not 100% sure. Thanks!
  8. Echinoid prep

    Hello, I believe that this is a fossilized sea urchin, it might not look so, but I do see a resemblance. It appears to be made out of gypsum, or another soft crystal. I was wondering If iy would be wise to dip it in vinigar. Would you be able to see some more details? Or will the wjole thing just dissolve?
  9. Definitely Agatized......Echinoderm?

    Well, as you maybe can see it is agatized and you can see right down to its larger cells . Is this a part of an echinoderm? Thanks
  10. blastoid, echinoderm?

    Found this in a gravel bar when I was a kid in south St. Louis county. One of my favorites simply due to the complexity, the impression, and the "remnant piece". Not sure how to differentiate pentremite from blastoid other than the narrow suture lines/rays? Thoughts welcomed! Bone
  11. Starfish

    I got this fossil at an antique shop a while back and I believe they told me it was from Morocco. other than that I have no other information. Is there any way you guys could help me?
  12. Sea Biscuit

    I bought this at a fossil and rock show at my local state fair, I did not get any identification on it besides "Sea Biscuit". Can anyone help me?
  13. Echinoid ID

    Found recently in Split, Croatia, near Adriatic sea, on hill called Marjan Location If someone can tell the species? Thanks
  14. An acquaintance of mine bought this at the Tucson gem and mineral show two years ago. He is now interested in selling and I am interested in buying. The price seems fair but of course the big question....is it real? I may add is it all real, is it a composite of different pieces, or is it a fabrication/replica? The whole piece is close to 15 inches at the tallest point, and close to 13 inches at the widest point. Thank you for your help.
  15. I have been fortunate to hunt Mazon Creek fossils for nearly 40 years. I have collected Many tens of thousands of concretions. I have also purchased premium specimens from other collectors. In the past, I have posted many of these specimens on the forum. I have decided to start posting more in depth descriptions of some of the amazing animals that can be found in the MC deposit. All specimens that I will post are from my personal collection. The first animal that I will highlight is the holothurian or sea cucumber Achistrum sp. Sea cucumbers are a common animal in today’s oceans but quite rare in the fossil record. The Marine (Essex) portion of the Mazon Creek deposit is one of the few places in the world where complete body fossils of these animals can be collected. These worm like animals are actually a type of echinoderm and show 5 radial body elements that run the length of the animal. Well preserved specimens will show a sac like body and an oral ring preserving approximately 15 calcareous plates. Occasionally the intestinal tract and other internal features will be preserved. Just like modern sea cucumbers, Achistrum sp had a leathery body covered in “J” shaped sclerites or Sigmoid hooks. Often times, detecting these under a microscope is the best way to identity poorly preserved specimens. As the animal dried out, the skin would crack and these cracks were eventually replaced by calcite. This gives the body of Achistrum sp a septarian like appearance. While modern sea cucumbers have retractable tentacles surrounding the mouth, none have been observed in Achistrum sp. The animal can reach length of over 15 centimeters however most found average under 10 centimeters. Achistrum is relatively abundant and are occasionally found in masses of multiple individuals. Despite many thousands of specimens collected, Achistrum has never been formally described. At one time it was believed that there may be as many as a dozen different species of sea cucumber found in the Mazon Creek deposit. This has been reduced to one or possibly two different types. This first image shows an exquisite specimen that I collected at Pit 11 in 2017. it is a complete animal and preserves evidence of some unusual muscular structure in the esophagus area that I have not seen before.
  16. Hungry Hollow echinoderm

    Hello there! This past Saturday, I went on a "field trip" to Hungry Hollow near Arkona, Ontario (mid-Devonian in age), and I found one weird item. It's an echinoderm of some sort, but which sort? A crinoid holdfast? Something else? Please see the photos below and let me know what you think. (By the way - I didn't make it home from work in time to take photos in natural light today, so I apologize for the fairly poor photo quality - if it's sunny tomorrow I can get better pictures then. And I also apologize for my blue finger in the photos - my students and I were looking at cheek cells under the compound light microscope today and some methylene blue got on my fingers - oops!) One end showing the pentaradial symmetry: The other end not showing much: Side photos: Thanks for your help! Monica
  17. Hi all, It's been a while since I posted a trip report but I was feeling like posting last evening as well as testing out my new photography rig. I moved houses two years ago and lost my lovely brick wall backdrop (the exterior of back of the house) which allowed photography in natural light. The new house is all vinyl siding outside and I have more shade so less opportunity for good sunlit pictures. However, one corner inside the house has a bricked area where a wood burning stove used to be so I have decided to set up some lights there. The pics came out ok so let's proceed with the report. I recently went up to the St. Mary's quarry in Bowmanville, Ontario on a scheduled trip with the local Scarborough club and also stopped off at Arkona while in Canada. I did pretty well at Arkona where I found four Eldredgeops trilobites and two Blastoids among other finds. Nucelocrinus elegans from the Hungry Hollow member of the Widder formation. Sorry, no pics of the Trilobites due to some back spasms but I got these pics of a nice Atactotoechus fruiticosus branch also from the Hungry Hollow Member of the Widder formation. Then I went to the St. Mary's quarry on Sunday where I took a tumble down the rock pile and hurt my ribs. Lucky for me my hard hat took the brunt of the impact my head made with the rocks. With nothing broken and still able to move around, I stayed closer to the ground and found this partial, eroded Isoltelus sp. that is inverted and still shows the Hypostome in place. I also found a plate with Graptolites but that was too heavy to hold and photograph last night. I'll post it tomorrow maybe. Finally, I drove home on Monday and stopped off at a place in New York where some of the Kashong Shale member of the Moscow formation is exposed and found these two surprises. A cephalon of a Dipleura dekayi with some of the shell material eroded away. I think the eye is intact and waiting to see again once some rock is removed. And here is a closeup of the shell on top where you can see the stippled pattern where sensory pits used to be. Lastly I found a pygidium that I am not sure of the genera on. Possibly a Basidechenella sp.? So not a bad trip at all, despite the injury. Good news is that I am healing nicely but still have some soreness and muscle spasms. I'm looking forward to my next trip up in the spring and hopefully will avoid the health scares.
  18. Belochthus orthokolus

    From the album Echinoderm Collection

    Belochthus orthokolus (Bell, 1976). Found in the Verulam formation, Gamebridge, Ontario, Canada. Middle Ordovician. Obtained online as a purchase. The edrio is about 1.8 cm long.
  19. Echinoderm??

    I have found 2 invertebrate fossils that I haven't found before. They appear to be five-sided and one shows a star fish pattern on the top. The bottoms are curved and smooth. The dimensions are about 0.5 cm in diameter and 1 to 2 mm in thickness. Any help in identifying would be greatly appreciated as usual. (The rocks from the lake are from the Pennsylvanian period). Are they a type of echinoderm? The shape and characteristics of the underside seem a bit odd-could it be a central part of an echinoderm? Another question that comes to mind is why are they so similar yet one lacks the five radial lines visible on the other?
  20. Burrowing echinoderm?

    From the album Macro Florida Fossils

    I found this whale vertebrae with a lot of burrowing damage. I'm not sure if these pebbles I found inside are rocks or echinoderms.
  21. I don't know whether I should have put this in the ID section instead, as I'm looking for some info and for help in sorting out what I've got, but not necessarily IDs per se. But it's also a sort of show-and-tell, so here goes. The info I'm trying to sort out has to do with the locations and formation/stages of some of the items. To help, I'll post the Ordovician correlation chart from the ICS and this other one from a paper on the Valongo (Portugal) site recently posted in the Documents section, showing the known soft-bodied sites of the Ordovician... The latter seems a little too tidy, with the deposits fitting exactly within the given stages, but maybe it will be of some help:
  22. A family of amateur fossil hunters from Utah -- the Gunthers -- found this fascinating fossil in the Spence Gulch shale part of Utah in 1992, and shared it with Richard Robison at the University of Kansas. The mystery of what it was went unsolved for nearly 30 years, until a team at Ohio State uncovered the telltale circle that showed the creature had attached to a shelly surface via a basal disc. It's the earliest/one of the earliest known specimens of a mat-sticker making the evolutionary move to attaching to a harder surface--a leap that makes some of our modern-day echinoderms, including sea cucumbers, possible. They recently published their findings in the Bulletin of Geosciences but this discovery wouldn't have been possible if the Gunthers hadn't found the fossil in the first place. Just fascinating stuff. (story here: https://news.osu.edu/scientists-discover-evolutionary-link-to-modern-day-sea-echinoderms/),
  23. Crinoid from Fern Glenn For, Missouri

    Hi everyone, I was out on a collecting trip this weekend around the Fern Glenn Fm, St Louis, Missouri. I came across this which I think is Crinoid related but I've never seen one with the little spikes sticking out. It's about 3/8th inch diameter by about 3/16 inch thick. Can anyone give me any ideas of the species. Thank you
  24. Is this an echinoderm?

    Is this an echinoderm?
  25. Sand Dollar ID

    I have had this sand dollar in my collection for forever, I alway keep it with a modern one. I have no info on it and it was given to me from a friend. Any ID and possible location would be appreciated.
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