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Found 1 result

  1. Hello everyone, Last Saturday, October 6th, I joint a fossil hunting excursion of the Dutch geological society (NGV) to the ENCI quarry, near the town of Maastricht (The Netherlands). This quarry has been in production since 1926, and has been one of the best fossil hunting sites of the Netherlands ever since. Worldwide, the youngest time interval of the Cretaceous Period is known as the Maastrichtian, a reference to the rock layers exposed in this area. We owe this international reference to the instrumental work of Belgian geologist André Hubert Dumont, who, in 1849, first described the rock layers in the valley of the Meuse River, close to the present-day ENCI quarry. Consequently, the rock sequence in the ENCI quarry constitutes the original type-locality of the Maastrichtian Stage. The Maastrichtian rocks are also world famous for their excavated mosasaur skeletons (the word 'mosa' is latin for the river Meuse. Mosasaurs are also named after this locality). Yet, unfortunately, all good things come to an end: the ENCI quarry is closing down. The production has stopped this month, and the quarry is now turned into a nature conservation area. Most of the quarry walls are currently being covered up, to make 'nice' gently slopes. Burying all remaining fossils forever.... So the remaining few excursions this year are the very last opportunity to hunt some fossils in this once glorious pit. I have been there a couple of times this year, and every trip fills me with melancholy. While the hunting is still relatively okay(ish), the possibilities become fewer and fewer, and only a very small part of the total strata can be examined....
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