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Found 274 results

  1. Hi all I would like to show some of my favourite ammonites from my collection. 1. Dactylioceras toxophorum and Harpoceras Isle Skye uk 2. Dectylioceras Toxophorum with Bivalve Isle of Skye uk 3. Calcite Dectylioceras in a pebble Isle of Skye uk 4.Harpoceras Falciferum Ilminster Somerset uk 5. Promicroceras in a fragment of Caenesites Lyme Regis uk 6. Parkinsonia Parkinsoni Sengenthal Germany 7.Ceratites sublaevigatus Germany 8. Pseudolioceras, P.lythense Whitby Yorkshire 9. Polished Cleoniceras Mahajanga, Madagascar 10. , Bajocian? Ammonite from Burton Bradstock, Dorset, England 11. Stephanoceras and Belemnite Natural Association 12. Echioceras Radstock, Somerset. Uk 13. A close up of number 4 14. Chalk Nautilus Beer Head, Dorset uk 15. Dactylioceras Cf Athleticum with a worm tube Ilminster Somerset.uk 16. Hildocerss Lusitanicum Ilminster Somerset 17. Lytoceras Crenstum with a Belemnite and Shells Northampton
  2. G'day all! After three years since my last visit to the UK, i finally returned in December 2017 for another massive collecting trip across England. This was my most ambitious tour of the UK's Mesozoic and Cenozoic vertebrate deposits thus far, with 20 days of collecting across ten different locations. These were (in chronological order from first visit): Abbey Wood in East London Beltinge in Kent Bouldnor on the Isle of Wight Compton Bay to Grange Chine on the Isle of Wight Lyme Regis to Charmouth in Dorset Aust Cliff in Gloucestershire Saltwick Bay in Yorkshire Kings dyke in Cambridgeshire Minster in Kent Tankerton in Kent. If you went collecting at any of these places in the last month, there's probably a 25.6975% chance you saw me looking very intimidating hunched over in my hooded rain jacket and muddy pants 14 of those collecting days were back-to-back, a new record for me, though it was very tiring! Having just come from the hot Australian summer, winter collecting in England was certainly a challenge at times and my fingers and toes froze to the point i could barely feel them on multiple occasions. Temperatures for many of the days reached 0 degrees celcius or below, with ice on the ground around me and even snow falling while i was trying to collect! I also went out during the middle of the night to collect using a head torch on some occasions (mainly at Bouldnor) due to the tidal conditions and bad weather which prevented collecting during the day. All in all i am certainly pleased with how the trip went, i was successful at all locations with the exception of Tankerton. For some of the locations (Aust Cliff, Kings dyke, Saltwick Bay) it was also my first and only visit, so i'm glad i still managed to do well with no prior experience at these sites and with such limited time at each. I have tried to write this trip report not only as a means of showing you guys my finds but also to provide an informative overview of some of the better locations for Mesozoic and Cenozoic vertebrates across England for others who might be planning similar trips. Anyway, here are the results! Pictures will be spread across the next 12 posts due to file size restrictions. Abbey Wood - East London (6/12/17, 30/12/17 and 31/12/17) Formation: Blackheath ('Lesnes Shell Bed') Deposit Age: 54.5 million years (Eocene) Fossil Diversity: Sharks, bony fish, chimaeroids, bivalves, gastropods, rare mammals, turtles and crocodiles This was one of only two inland locations i visited (the other being Kings dyke). As i have found, the majority of the UK's easily accessible fossil collecting locations are coastal! Abbey Wood is an excellent location just 45 minutes on the tube from central London. It is situated in a park called the Lesnes Abbey Woods and there is a small collecting area that is open to the public for shallow digging (see my first two pictures below). You definitely need a sifter, shovel and basin of water at this location to have any real success. Be warned though that once you combine the fine Blackheath sediments with water during sifting you get some pretty gnarly mud so expect to come away from this site looking like you've just been rolling around in the dirt. I'm sure i got some interesting looks from people on the tube going back to London it was all worth it though, as every single sift load produced at least one shark tooth across the three days i visited. Very impressive considering the number of obvious holes dotted around the ground from years worth of other collectors visiting. It should be noted though that the mammalian material from this location is of high scientific importance, and collecting here is allowed on the condition that any mammalian finds be brought to the attention of and handed in to specialists like Dr Jerry hooker at the Natural History Museum in London. I didn't find any such material on my trips unfortunately. Here is the designated collecting area. The statue at the front is of Coryphodon, one of the rare Eocene mammals that has been found at the site. The full haul of shark teeth from three days of sifting in the collecting area. Most are from Striatolamia and Sylvestrilamia. I gave up trying to count them once i got past 100 Some of the other fishy bits that often turn up during sifting, including guitar fish teeth on the far left and two dermal denticles (Hypolophodon sylvestris), one gar pike fish tooth in the middle (Lepisosteus suessionensis), one shark vertebra down the bottom and unidentified bony fish vertebrae on the right. I don't typically collect shells, but i picked these up for the sake of adding a bit more diversity to my Abbey Wood collection. These are bivalves and gastropods of various species. The molluscan diversity from this one location is actually quite impressive. Beltinge - Kent (7/12/17 and 29/12/17) Formation: Upnor ('Beltinge Fish Bed') Deposit Age: 56.5 million years old (Paleocene) Fossil Diversity: Sharks, chimaeroids, bony fish, rays, turtles, crocodiles, bivalves, wood This is my favourite shark tooth collecting location in the UK and probably my favourite that i have visited anywhere so far. The shoreline directly opposite the access point at the end of Reculver Drive in Beltinge is loaded with teeth and dare i say it's impossible to come here and walk away empty handed. The shore however is very flat so there is generally only about a two hour window of time that collecting can be carried out here, one hour either side of low tide. Conditions can also vary depending on how sanded over the shore is, whether the Beltinge Fish Bed itself is exposed and how low the tide drops. However even on a poor day you will still find teeth here, just not as many! I experienced this first hand as the first day i visited on December 7th the conditions were excellent. The tide dropped quite low, there wasn't too much sand covering the clay and the Beltinge Fish Bed was exposed. This allowed direct in-situ collecting of teeth from this rich layer and i ended up with something like 240 teeth from just a couple of hours of looking. The second visit i made on December 29 of the same month was almost the exact opposite. It's amazing how quickly these coastal locations can change! The shore was largely sanded over, the fish bed was covered and the tide didn't drop anywhere near as much. I was out about the same amount of time as the first but only managed 69 teeth (only ). Keep these things in mind if you are planning a visit. Luckily though i didn't just find shark teeth, i also managed to locate some of the other less common finds as you will see below! Here is the area of shoreline that produces teeth, photographed on December 7th. It was quite cold and rainy! Three teeth sitting next to each other as found. More as-found shark teeth. This one made me quite excited when i saw it. It's a large piece of chimaeroid fish jaw and mouthplate coming straight from the Beltinge Fish Bed itself (the darker, dull-green sandy clay in this picture). Beltinge is continued in the next post.
  3. I've not had a chance to post my finds here in a while but over the past few months I've found some new specimens of Lower Carboniferous/Mississippian marine shark teeth I wanted to share! These were collected at various sites in the Midland Valley of Scotland from the Blackhall Limestone, an extensive formation with interesting variations in fauna at each different locality. Ctenoptychius sp. Anterior tooth in lingual view, 6mmx7mm.
  4. Hi, I headed out for a full day of collecting at Hamstead on Saturday, and thought I'd share how it went. I reached the beach at Hamstead Duver around 9am and began searching the foreshore. The finds on this part of the coast are washed round by longshore drift, but it can be a productive section. This was definitely the case on Saturday, within the first 20 odd metres I picked up various pieces of trionychid carapace, Emys fragments, and the worn trochlea of an anthracothere humerus. I continued west along the coast before reaching the slipway (a disused boat launching ramp, apparently used by the US military in preparation for the Normandy Landings) the point where Hamstead Cliffs begin. Having not been able to visit in nearly a month, and after weeks of pretty violent storms over Christmas and the New Year, the coast at Hamstead Ledge has now completely changed. Most of the sand and gravel has been taken off the beach leaving large exposed areas of Bembridge Marls strata on the foreshore. The junction bed between the underlying Bembridge Limestone and Bembridge Marls is also now visible (usually obscured by sand and gravel). The Bembridge Limestone Fm. lays beneath the Bouldnor Fm. and was laid down in a series of large carbonate lakes on a heavily forested sub-tropical coastal plain stretching across what is now the northern Island. At 34.0 million years ago rising sea levels flooded the plain and the estuary/lagoons of the lower Bembridge Marls were deposited, which can be observed in the low cliff face. (A small normal fault can be seen in the Bembridge Marls highlighted in yellow, additionally the 'thin white horizon' is the western limits of the famous Insect Limestone. However it is un-lithified and does not produce insects at this locality) The largest change however was an enormous landslide just west of the ledge in the high cliff face. As well as several smaller falls and slips, this slip has littered the beach with clay debris and small trees. It's on the site of a large mudflow from last winter, I reckon the heavy rain saturated the already weakened area and triggered a large scale failure of the cliff face. I checked through the debris (and the exposed strata) and found some very nice pieces, including a huge piece of trionychid hypoplastron (the largest turtle piece I've ever found), a fragment of alligator jaw, a large fish vertebra, and two large baso-occipital bones from Bowfins (Amia sp.). As the beach was covered with clay blocks the foreshore wasn't very productive for ex-situ finds. As the tide dropped I moved further west towards Cranmore and beach conditions returned to normal with shingle, sand, and gravel, and a nice variety of finds. The best finds were a couple of anthracothere teeth, including a very nice canine. Coprolites were also very common as usual, most, if not all, are likely crocodilian. Further west there are exposures of the Upper Hamstead Member on the foreshore which if you're lucky turn up in-situ finds. The Upper Hamstead Member dates from approximately 33.2 - 32.4 million years ago. This time I was in luck, I spotted a large bone fragment and a piece of Emys weathering out of the clay. I checked the areas adjacent in case there was anymore associated material but unfortunately not. The bone fragment appears to be a rib. I reached Cranmore and collected some matrix for micro-sieving from the cliff face, and after collecting a few more bone fragments and coprolites, and with the tide now rising I called it a day and headed up to the main road. Overall it was a good collecting trip, with some good finds. Hopefully as the winter goes on the landslide debris is eroded away and some nice vertebrate remains are produced. Hope this was interesting, Theo 1. Huge piece of trionychid hypoplastron 2. 'Interior' view of the hypoplastron
  5. Lyme Regis- Charmouth

    Hello all Around April, May I'm going to the UK for a couple of days with my parents. They will visit some villages, while I'll be fossil hunting on the beach. I've done some research on the internet and thefossilforum, but sometimes the messages I get are contradictory. So I have some questions. -Is it allowed to search fossils in Lyme Regis and Charmouth with a hamer? I know you can't hack in the cliffs. -Is April and May a good period to search for fossils? -I have some serious problems with my eyes and it's very difficult for me to find loose fossils lying on the beach. Are there nice finds in the rocks? I can see those a whole lot better. -If you find an ichthyosaur or a big ammonite (I don't expect to find any) are you allowed to take them with you home? -Does anyone of you know if a good place to stay in Lyme Regis or Charmouth? I found a lot of places and now I don't know which one I have to choose. Our dog is going with us. -Any more tips? Thanks already Greetings Thijs
  6. What ichthyosaur bone is this?

    I think one is a rib, but i'm not sure about the other bits, cheers.
  7. Hi, I thought I'd share some of my finds from what was a pretty good trip up to Bouldnor Cliff on Tuesday morning. This was my first collecting trip in over a month due to tides, being ill over Christmas and being generally busy, so I missed out on most of December. But hopefully I can start getting back into going twice a week again as usual. Low tide was at 09:48 so I decided to head for Bouldnor instead of Hamstead, as it's a lot easier to quickly access. My hope was that the prolonged stormy weather we've had for a couple of weeks now would have brought up some nice finds, and I wasn't disappointed. Walking along the shingle I quickly spotted a worn mammal vertebra sticking out of the sand, then a couple of metres away in an area of mud was the distal end of an anthracothere humerus. Pieces like these can be pretty rare finds so I was really pleased with them. They both seem likely to be from Bothriodon based off their larger size. Moving further along the coast the productivity dropped and the finds were the usual fish vertebrae, alligator scutes, and Emys fragments punctuated by the occasional piece of rolled bone. I checked the surface of the log bed and any shelly horizon for bones or teeth that may be weathering out, but unfortunately no luck there. An interesting sight though was the log bed's huge tree trunks. Usually obscured by sand the log bed marks the boundary between the Upper and Lower Hamstead Members. It correlates with a eustatic lowstand attributed to the onset of antarctic glaciation and rapid global cooling. Around this bed is where the mammal fauna at Bouldnor passes through the famous Grande Coupure, marking the extinction of earlier endemic Eocene mammals like palaeotheres and anoplotheres, who are replaced with rhinocerotids, carnivorans, and a wide range of artiodactyls and rodents, including entelodonts and anthracotheres. The log bed represents a large log jam in fluvial swampy conditions, intermixed with the trees were the carcasses of mammals (a nearly intact Anoplotherium skeleton eroded out of the bed between the 1960's and 2002). Large tree trunks of pines and redwoods can be seen weathering out on the foreshore, and look pretty impressive. There's a long hiatus after the log bed, before the deposition of the Upper Hamstead Member above. Having passed the log bed, productivity picked up again and within the space of around 20 metres I made some pretty nice finds, including teeth from Bothriodont anthacotheres, an alligator tooth, a large section of trionychid costal plate, alligator jaw fragments, and a large cervical vertebra from an alligator (Diplocynodon sp.). Despite missing the neural arch and cervical ribs on one side the vertebra is quite well preserved and unworn, and is definitely one of the best bones I've collected from the Bouldnor Fm. I walked on a bit further towards Cranmore but decided to turn back as the tide has begun to turn. Overall, it was a great trip with some really nice finds. I'm planning on heading up to Hamstead for a full day of collecting on Saturday so I'll post on how that trip goes. Thank you, Theo 1. Worn Bothriodon vertebra 2. Distal anthracothere humerus, most likely Bothriodon 3. Diplocynodon cervical vertebra 4. Front view of the Diplocynodon vertebra
  8. Crocodilian Bone ID?

    This small crocodilian fossil was collected on the beach at Bouldnor on the Isle of Wight in southern England. It comes from the Bouldnor Formation and is about 33 million years old. I'm certain it is crocodilian (from the small aligatorid Diplocynodon) based on the distinctive pitted texture. Scutes and vertebrae from this small croc are fairly common finds on this coastline. However this particular piece has stumped me, it is 3D and hollow on the inside, not like any scute i've picked up. I was thinking it must be some sort of skull element but i'd appreciate any help to rectify this! It measures 4 cm long.
  9. Hello all! Does anyone have detailed tips that they can share with me? I plan to go Folkestone and Samphire Hoe to find fossils. I googled, and there's plenty of ammonites in those places. So, if anyone has good tips to share with me, please do, as I hope that I do not waste any time and effort looking for fossils when I am there. Replies are greatly appreciated. Thanks!
  10. Hello all! I'm wondering, if there are any fossil sites in the UK with fossil shark teeth. I know in UK there are tons of places with ammonites, but what about shark teeth? As long as it's shark teeth, I want to find it. But if there's megalodon teeth in UK, I'd spend days looking for one. Any ideas where to find shark teeth in UK? Thanks for all replies!
  11. Bone find (twisted) ID ?

    New years day... fossil hunting as you do... found some really nice Ammonites and the other half found this bone concretion, thought it was the usual fish bone concretion but once open realised it wasn't and I should have treated it a bit more gently the bone seems to be horizontal at one end and vertical the other like it twists, any ideas ? Thanks.
  12. Found at Runswick Bay (UK)

    Hi, I found this at Runswick Bay earlier today. I found a few other bona-fide fossils, but I wasn't entirely sure what this is. Bone... or just rock/pyrite? I was intrigued enough to not leave it! Thanks, Mark
  13. Ammonite layer... Harpoceras ?

    Found this pyrite concretion, looked like a crushed section at first, tapped it and exposed a nice Ammonite, got it home and wanted to expose more, must have had a hairline crack as ended up in half straight away (not intended) but... revealed a larger Ammonite inside which was now in half glued back together and will prep at a later date, wanted to show and check if Harpoceras, thanks.
  14. Jurassic Bone Block ID? (Yorkshire, UK)

    Hi all, I recently found this massive bowling ball sized rock at Saltwick Bay near Whitby on the Yorkshire coast (Northern England). It is lower to middle Jurassic, i think about 180-170 million years old (possibly the Whitby Mudstone Formation). As you can see it it's full of various bones, which occur on almost all sides of the rock so they are probably running right through it. Prep for this one is going to be a nightmare i can tell and i don't have the right tools, but for now i really just want to try and figure out what i've got. I think it's fair to assume the bones are associated. The options for this bit of coast are fish (Gyrosteus), ichthyosaur, marine crocodile, plesiosaur or dinosaur. I was hoping based on the cross sectional shapes of some of the bones, and the texture of the bone itself, someone would be able to narrow down what it might be. Fish or reptile would be the first thing to determine. My obvious first assumption was marine reptile, but some of the fish on the Yorkshire coast like Gyrosteus are also huge (5m long) and i'm not very familiar with their bone structure. In this picture, i thought the rectangular bone towards the bottom might be a vertebra in cross-section. If so, from what? Could it be the edge of an ichthyosaur vertebra before it dips down in the centre? This bone is the biggest in the block, about 8 cm long and 3 cm thick. Continued in the next post!
  15. Big bone ID

    Out hunting today on Yorkshire coast, found this big chunk, tapped side off and noticed was bone, used to finding imprints of bones but not 3d chunks like this, possible large Plesiosaur ? Thanks.
  16. Belemnite little oddities...

    Hi, sat having my coffee and browsing my fossil candle tray and noticed some little oddities on a belemnite, any ideas ? Not seen these before, possible feeders ? Cheers.
  17. Port Mulgrave find, looks unusual, any ideas ? Thanks.
  18. Claw ID Help - Bouldnor Formation, UK

    Collected recently from Bouldnor on the Isle of Wight. It is about 33 million years old (earliest Oligocene). Fossils of turtles, a small alligatorid (Diplocynodon) and land mammals (most commonly anthracotheres) are the usual finds. This is the first ungual i have ever found from this location, and i am having trouble finding images of other examples to compare with. It measures 18mm long. I first thought crocodile when i collected it, but i would like other opinions. I'm now tossing up between mammalian and crocodilian. I understand going further than that will probably not be possible. Cheers!
  19. Hi, I thought I'd show some of my first micro-vertebrate fossils from the Bembridge Marls Mbr. of the Bouldnor Fm. I collected around 2kg of matrix from one of the 'shelly' estuarine horizons in the lower part of the member at Hamstead Ledge, and am really pleased the results so far! The Bembridge Marls form the basal member of the Bouldnor Fm. and were deposited between 34.0 and 33.75 million years representing the final 250,000 years of the Eocene epoch. The depositional environment varies throughout the member and many beds are laterally discontinuous (like the Insect Bed, which produces finely preserved insects, feathers, leaves, and lizard skin impressions). Generally however, the Bembridge Marls were laid down in a sluggish lagoonal/estuarine environment with areas of wetland and adjacent sub-tropical/tropical forests, in the southern regions of the Hampshire Basin. To the south were forested chalk uplands that are now the downs of the Isle Of Wight. There was also some fluvial influence from rivers flowing from the west, draining the uplands around Dartmoor in Devon. Fauna-wise vertebrates like fish and freshwater turtles are common, and mammal remains are rarely found (in comparison to the overlying Hamstead members which are rich in post and pre-grande coupure mammals), these include palaeotheres, creodonts, rodents, anoplotheres, choeropotamids, xiphodonts, and primates. So far I've only searched through a small amount of the matrix but it has produced indeterminate teleost vertebra, Bowfin teeth, fin spines, indeterminate fish premaxillae, and a very nice crocodilian tooth. (The quality of the images isn't always fantastic but I'm trying to find a way to work around it in the microscope's program) Isolated fish vertebra from teleosts are by far the most common micro-fossil, and I've collected more than 10 so far. Here's a nice example: Bowfin teeth are also quite common and vary in size from 2-7.5mm in length. Bowfins would have been ambush predators feeding on smaller fish and other vertebrates in the lagoons and estuaries. Based on vertebra I've found ex-situ on the beach it seems some of these fish were very large. (Close up of one the teeth) These pre-maxillae also seem to turn up from time to time and appear to be from some form of teleost. The closest match I can find is with some kind of Gadiform? And finally the best find so far, a crocodilian tooth crown. I spotted this on the surface of one of the matrix blocks. It's most likely from the alligatoroid Diplocynodon which was very common in the wetlands and rivers of Europe from the Palaeocene to the Miocene. Diplocynodon has also been found in the early Eocene marine deposits of the London Clay suggesting that they frequented both freshwater and brackish/coastal habitats. The matrix is nowhere near fully sieved and sorted through yet so hopefully there's a lot more micro-vertebrates in there! Hope this was of interest, Theo
  20. Wealden turtle or fish scale?

    Hi Is this turtle or fish scale? Size: near 1,7 cm x near 1,1 cm
  21. Ammonite ID please

    Hi, found this at the weekend, looked battered but knew possible potential on the opposite side but high chance would be broken as Pyratised, it did break in half but glued together and now looks pretty beautiful, got ideas on ID but wanted to show you guys/gals anyways, thanks.
  22. Mystery Petalodont

    I found this little tooth a few months ago in the Coal Measures (Westphalian A) of Scotland in a fresh/brackish water deposit and thought it might be a Janassa sp. of some sort but now I'm not so sure, the only other Petalodont genus's I'm aware of in the British Coal Measures are Ageleodus and Ctenoptychius but they both have multicuspid crowns, the tooth is in labial view and is 11mm across. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated!
  23. Fossil or not? Isle of Wight

    Hi My brother has given my kids a fossil he found on Compton bay, Isle of Wight(uk) we are curious to know what it is from (if anything!) any help would be appreciated It is 46mm long, 25mm wide and 20mm deep.
  24. My ichthyosaurus collection

    Here is my small ichthyosaur collection. I keep all my fossils in 19th century draws as it fits with our living room which is a Victorian cabinet of curiosities or Wunderkammer. Paddle basioccipital
  25. Ammonite prep advice

    Hi, found a couple of nodules, thought this one had a small Ammonite in, went to remove a bit of the bulk and found a larger one insure, you think I best prep around the outside first to expose the entire Ammonite then work inwards or you think worth tapping to remove more bulk ? Thanks.
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