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Found 159 results

  1. 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???
  2. 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!
  3. Iowa Devonian Fossil Help Please

    Found this fossil recently while visiting the Fossil Park near Rockford, Iowa. The fossils here are Devonian in age, and belong to the Hackberry Group/Lime Creek Formation. Have found numerous varieties of brachiopods, horn and colony coral, gastropods, bryozoa, and pieces of crinoid stems, but have never seen anything quite like this. Since it was such a crappy day, I had the whole park to myself except for one guy from Minnesota. Thinking he might be more knowledgeable than myself, I asked for his opinion on what he thought this was. He suggested it was definitely a crinoid calyx. I am not so sure. Thank you all for checking it out.
  4. I graduated college back in May, and since my graduate program did not start until September, I was fortunate to have quite a bit of time this summer to explore further away from home. I've been slowly prepping and cataloging over the past couple months, and figured I would share some of my favorite finds that I haven't shared yet. First up is dump piles of Silica Shale (Middle Devonian) in Paulding, OH. My university was not far from here, so this is really where I started fossil hunting. I've been here quite a few times, so most of what I found I already had in my collection. A new find for me, and my favorite, is a nice chunk of Protitanichthys placoderm armor. I visited family near Indianapolis in August, and headed out a day early to visit some classic sites. This is the view from a roadcut in Sulphur, IN that exposes the Indian Springs Shale (Mississippian). My first blastoid and first shark tooth of the day. Can you spot them? A small portion of the haul. Lots of blastoids (the main attraction), horn corals, and some brachiopods, plus a crinoid I have yet to identify. Next up was the famous St. Leon roadcut (Upper Ordovician). This was my second visit to this site. You need to get on your hands and knees to spot the tiny Flexicalymene rollers.
  5. I'm slowly making my way through finds from the summer and have come across a couple specimens I don't recognize. The first one is from the Platteville Formation of SW Wisconsin (Middle Ordovician). The second one is from the Maquoketa Formation of NE Iowa (Upper Ordovician).
  6. 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!!!!!!
  7. 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!
  8. Devonian trip

    The other day I went on a annual trip to a quarry in Iowa. Givetian age rocks. Finds were few this time around, for me at least. This was my best find, although not perfect or complete, still a nice example. It was tricky to prep as I didn't want to destroy the reddish- mauve brachiopod contrasting nicely with the caramel colored E. noorwoodensis. Thanks for looking!
  9. Mammal Bones ID Help!

    Hi, I have three bones today that need your help to ID. They were found on Iowa River's alluvial deposits. Thank you!
  10. Fossil Plants From Cave Deposits, Near Pella, Marion County, Iowa lepidostrobus Sp. Brongniart- arborescent, 310 Mya old, Club Moss locality, Pella, Iowa Formation, Pella Beds Age Pennsylvanian The Lepidostrobus is the generic name for the cones of arboresent lycopsid. It corresponds closely in structure with the fertile spike of the living Selaginella. The spore-bearing leaves are attached to a central axis in a crowded spiral arrangement, and their outer ends curve over so as to form an imbricated, diagonally arranged pattern, resembling that of the stem itself. The Lepidostrobus cones produced spores and megaspores.
  11. Omphalophloios Sp. Lesquereux Pennsylvanian Arborescent, 310 Mya old, Pella Beds, Pella, Iowa Omphalophloios is a genus of fossil lycopsid trees in the Carboniferous system.
  12. Trip Planning- Le Grand Quarry

    Planning a serious Iowa excursion for my Uni before winter hits. Was curious if any of you have done any rockhounding around the Le Grand area. Apparently is a site for exquisite crinoid plates. Just curious before I start calling the stone company and procure access/permits/etc. https://www.legrand.lib.ia.us/Library-information/fossils/crinoidfossils was sent a link to this by a contact at UNL...hence my sudden interest https://www.iihr.uiowa.edu/igs/publications/uploads/Em-04.pdf
  13. NE Iowa Paleozoic

    I read a lot of fossil hunting reports on here, but I don’t post many. I think it’s primarily because it is usually many, many months after I have gone when I finally get everything cleaned up, ID’d and take photos, etc. It just seems too after the fact to me at that point, haha. But this time, due to a wonderful “tour guide” we had, I wanted to get something posted in a relatively timely fashion. Because of that, I haven’t had time to do a lot of research I need to do on specific ID’s but luckily I’m somewhat familiar with most of what we found to make at least an educated guess. I have seen numerous folks on here show some of their finds from the Ordovician and Devonian of Iowa and nearby states and it always looked intriguing to me as I have collected the Ordovician in the (relatively) nearby Cincinnati area and the Devonian in the Great Lakes area and Oklahoma. I wanted to see how the Iowa stuff compares. So my wife and I opted to take the long way home from Indiana to Texas and swing through Iowa (and on to South Dakota, but that was more for sight-seeing). I had done some research on sites to check out and contacted Mike @minnbuckeye to see if he could help me high grade my list. Being the absolute gentleman that he is, he did one better and offered to act as our tour guide for a day of collecting through the Ordovician! What a guy!! I can’t thank him enough for taking the time to do this. We had a great day and hit a bunch of nice spots, most of which I had not found on my own and certainly didn’t know some of the very important details of the sites. Many folks have said it in other trip reports and I can only add to the chorus of how valuable it is to go with someone that knows the area and how nice it is of TFF members such as @minnbuckeye to offer their time and energy to do it. Based on Mike’s recommendation, we spent our first day doing some collecting in the Devonian rocks of the Coralville, Iowa area. The first spot we could not access due to some current road construction but we made our way to the next one and spent several hours along the Iowa River/Coralville Lake collecting from the Coralville Formation of the Cedar Valley Group. You quickly learn how Coralville got its name as the rocks are a coral/bryozoan limestone. There are brachiopods and other fauna, but corals make up the bulk of the fossils at this site. And there were some very nice ones as you can see in the pictures below. Beautiful Hexagonaria, huge horn corals and others. We also went to the Devonian Fossil Gorge and a nearby state park, both of which have nice exposures of Devonian rocks with fossils, but no collecting. Here is a shot of the area, fossils litter the ground. This represents our total haul from this site The horn coral in here were abundant and quite large. Corals What I believe are Hexagoanaria corals. I think with a little cleaning, these will look really nice and I like the juxtaposition with the horn coral. Brachiopods and bryozoans A nice piece that was a little too big to take.
  14. Maquoketa mysteries

    These two finds are stumping me a bit. Both are from the Maquoketa Fm (Upper Ordovician) of Iowa. The first one initially struck me as a 3D graptolite, but it could be a crinoid stem. I couldn't get a good photo of the cross section, but it is rectangular.
  15. Tusk Stabilization

    This is a tusk I recovered from a river sand bar in Iowa 24 hours ago. The tusk was in somewhat damp sand. It started to degrade right away once it was unearthed. I wrapped the tusk in a towel but it did dry out a bit. I got it home about 5 hours later and re-wrapped it in damp towels. I am writing this post to spell out my plan based only on reading some other posts but not based on any experience. I would appreciate any advise. What am I missing or doing wrong? -Add many zip ties to hold tusk together. Leave crusted-on sand for now. -Wrap with damp towels and wrap that with plastic trash bags, NOT completely airtight. -Store in dry basement for several months to gradually dry out. -After drying period, carefully clean and "baste" with paraloid b-72 50:1 -Use more concentrated paraloid b-72 to glue loose parts. Lots of small crumbled pieces to deal with somehow. -Cure for several days and then fill voids with PaleoSculp (or equal) a little bit at a time. -Sand and buff -Make a stand and show off! Thank you for looking!
  16. Help with ID of Fossil

    I found this today in the yard while doing some light soil work. No idea where it may have come from. Thinking it might have come up from the frost over the years. Look like sinew or even fat tissue when I saw it buried. After bringing it up and cleaning it up thought it looked like a giant arrow head. Then it even appeared to look as though in the pointed portion on the item it had what looked almost like growth plate lines like we have in our bones. The stub end looks a lot like a joint or knuckle of some point. We are located near the Iowa and English river basin's In Iowa. Any help would be great in identification of this item. And maybe it's just a black rock. I have other photos but it won't let me upload them. It is about 12" long and about 9"'s wide and about 3" 's tall.
  17. Fossil??

    I am undecided if this is fossil or dendritic deposits on a rock. It is from Keokuk limestone, Mississippian.
  18. Bone River Find Turtle?

    Another post regarding a specimen I found posted on a Facebook fossil ID page - which no one in the group can ID. This was found in a river in Iowa. Most of what is found in the area is Pleistocene to modern. My first though was part of a turtle shell attachment point? But I am stuck.
  19. Rock Bar Find

    This was found on a rock bar on the Des Moines River near Boone, Iowa, USA. The piece is approximately 4.2x6x4
  20. Iowa Surface Find

    This piece was found while surface hunting in a field near Boone, Iowa, USA, It measures approx. 6x3x2 cm
  21. Iowa Find

    This was found on a rock bar on the Des Moines River near Boone, Iowa, USA. Since you can't see the ruler very well in most of these pictures the piece is approximately 6x5x2.5 cm
  22. Lycopod I think but not sure

    Hi, I found this in Pensylvannian glacial till around a reservoir. It’s about 12” long by 5” in diameter. There are coal seams nearby. I think it’s a lycopod part of some kind but it doesn’t match most of the pics I’ve seen. Can anyone tell me more? I’m curious about the layered appearance. I don’t think it was in its original location as it was stacked on a big rock with other specimens. I left it in place due to regulations. Would have liked to keep it! Thanks!
  23. Crinoid

    Any clues to the genus of these crinoids? From Augusta, Iowa.
  24. Jaw identification

    I recently bought this jaw and was wondering if someone can shed some light on it. Seller gave some info on it, but when I received it it’s a little different than expected. Seller states it was found in Iowa. It also seems very light if it’s fossilized, I have no experience with fossil bone so I’m not sure what to expect. Any help is appreciated. Thanks
  25. Teeth

    I know these are mammal teeth. I'm pretty convinced that at least the one on the left is a bison but would like to confirm. Would also like a rough estimate of age of possible.