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Pit stop into the Silica Shale - Paulding, OH


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Hey everyone! Happy to finally be making another entry. 

Over the last couple of weeks I've been reading Richard Fortey's "Trilobite" and thus itching to get back into the field and see some for myself. Driving from New York to Chicago I decided to make a pit stop at Ohio's Paulding Community Fossil Garden and try my luck at finding some eldredgeops fossils. 

Here's what the garden looks like when you arrive:

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You're basically wading through fossils step after step. 

 

Here's the best of what I found, excluding some nice surface-collected brachiopods I've been handing out to friends here in Chicago. I have a few questions about what I've found, if anybody could give me their input it would be very much appreciated!!

 

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A lot of little bits.

 

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Crushed Eldredgeops rana cephalon about 1.75" wide.

 

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What I assume is a juvenile Eldredgeops rana? Size is about that of a dime. Tried to get to the surrounding shale using a pin vise but yielded scarce results. I'd be really grateful for any suggestions from more experienced preppers!

 

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Small, nickel sized brachiopod with something that looks to be stuck onto it! Anybody encounter this before?? I would attempt to prep off some of this muck but I don't want to risk damaging anything. Is a pin vise enough? A brush and some sort of solution maybe? Thanks for looking!

 

 

I'm in Chicago as I write this, and just this morning paid a visit to the legendary Dave's Down To Earth Rock Shop in Evanston. There are walls littered with incredible stones, ancient tools and fossils. Everywhere. Imagine my surprise when encountering a familiar face.

 

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:ptero:

 

 

 

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Fossildude19

@Peat Burns

 

Nice finds - thanks for the trip report. 

Glad you found some cool things. :)

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I will also call over Adam @Tidgy's Dad to have a look at the brachiopod with an epibiont on it, but I'll have a go at it - could the encruster be a Petrocrania hamiltoniae brachiopod?

 

Nice finds all around, by the way - congrats!

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FossilNerd

Thanks for the report! Looks like a cool little place to drop for a hunt. :) 
I need to make it up to Dave’s Rock Shop, I’ve seen pictures of some beautiful things there! 

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Tidgy's Dad
3 hours ago, Monica said:

I will also call over Adam @Tidgy's Dad to have a look at the brachiopod with an epibiont on it, but I'll have a go at it - could the encruster be a Petrocrania hamiltoniae brachiopod?

 

Nice finds all around, by the way - congrats!

Thanks, Monica.

You could be correct, but I can't tell. The picture isn't clear enough, it may be an epibiont, something squished against it during fossilization, or just rock/ mineral. :shrug: 

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2 hours ago, Monica said:

I will also call over Adam @Tidgy's Dad to have a look at the brachiopod with an epibiont on it, but I'll have a go at it - could the encruster be a Petrocrania hamiltoniae brachiopod?

 

Nice finds all around, by the way - congrats!

I think you're right!! Wow!

Found this example here and it looks spot on to what I have. Thanks Monica!

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FossilDAWG

As Tim noted @Peat Burns has expertise on the Paulding fauna.  I think he has a gallery that should be very helpful as well.

 

Don

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Peat Burns

My first thought was an inarticulate brachiopod on Strophodonta (the raised "cone" in the center is encouraging"), but like others have said it's difficult to confirm due to adhering matrix and poor resolution of photo.  I have found two species of inarticulates there; Philhedra crenistriata and Petrocrania hamiltoniae.  P. crenistriata is fairly distinct with it's radiating costae.  Conversely, P. hamiltoniae has concentric fine ridges on the shell.

 

Cleaning with water and a tooth brush (and a little vinegar if you want to try that - just be careful not to expose too long)  will help remove some of the attached matrix.  Pin vice will help with the rest.

 

I put together a preliminary species list for Paulding to which I and others have added photo-confirmed additions.  Here is the link:

 

 

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