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pleecan

Show Us Your Mazon Creek Fossils!

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pleecan

Mazon Creek nodules / concretions hold unique deposits of fossils including preservation of softbodied creatures such as jellyfish, worms, as well as others such as teeth, fish, plants etc... A very unique biota. [i did break down and bought one fossil from Mazon Creek ( will be arriving in the New Year)]... so Show us your Mazon Creek Fossils! PL

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nala

Hi this is my Mazon Creek plants,cheers!

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pleecan

Very nice collection Nala, thank you for posting and sharing. PL

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Does any one have Tully Monster to show, or fish, spider, shark teeth, annelid, clam?

PL

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Frank Menser

I have a shrimp but it photographs too poorly. So here are my Mazon Creek fossils.

Millipede

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Esconities (predatory worm)

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pleecan

Very nice fossils Frank!... I am always amazed of the Mazon Creek Lagerstatten biota... like viewing a time locked capsule. I actually bought a shrimp concretion this morning on Ebay... along with a couple of unopen nodules.... will post in the new year. PL

Edited by pleecan

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Plantguy

Frank/Nala, love the plants and the predatory worm!

PL, Here's a quick shot of an unidentified jellyfish that I almost obliterated

after waiting for months for the freezing thawing technique to work. It didnt

and I got impatient and the rock hammer was a smashing success! Almost too

successful! :blush:

I'm sure the other members have a ton of other stuff they can share here.

Seen lots of it before..Regards, Chris

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pleecan

Frank/Nala, love the plants and the predatory worm!

PL, Here's a quick shot of an unidentified jellyfish that I almost obliterated

after waiting for months for the freezing thawing technique to work. It didnt

and I got impatient and the rock hammer was a smashing success! Almost too

successful! :blush:

I'm sure the other members have a ton of other stuff they can share here.

Seen lots of it before..Regards, Chris

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Chris ... that is a neat looking jellyfish! For stubborn nodules that resists cleavage.... Do you know if anyone has tried roasting the nodules follow by a drop into a bucket of cold water.... that probably is too extreme :) PL

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Auspex

I tried that with siderite nodules from an old strip mine in McKean Co., PA

(they are very similar to Mazon Creek's); they shattered, mostly across the

shortest dimension. :(

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pleecan

I tried that with siderite nodules from an old strip mine in McKean Co., PA

(they are very similar to Mazon Creek's); they shattered, mostly across the

shortest dimension. :(

Thanks Auspex for sharing your observations! ... back to slow freeze thaw cycle and lots of patients :) !~The shortest dimension of any fossil nodule can withstand the least stress when subjected to extreme thermal cycling resulting in indiscriminant cleavage/breakage. PL

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RCFossils

I have already posted a few hundred specimens in my photo album. Here are some examples of why the fossils at Mazon Creek are word famous.

I will start by listing the animal that the dposit is best known for. Tullimonstrum gregarium is an enigmatic creature that might be a shelless mollusk or perhaps its own unique phyllum.

Complete specimens are extremely rare and only known from Illinois.

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RCFossils

The Mazon Creek Deposit is seperated into a terrestrial/freshwater environment known as the Braidwood Biota and the Marine Essex Biota. There are deposits similar to the Braidwood biota found at many locations around the world. Concretions that preserve marine organisms are virtually unknown outside of Illinois.

I will attach a few pictures of the better known Braidwood fauna.

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RCFossils

The most common animal found in the Essex fauna is the jellyfish Essexella asherae. Commonly known as "blobs" these interesting jellyfish come in a variety of shapes and sizes.

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Auspex

RCF, I am in awe...

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RCFossils

There are around a dozen different polychaete worms found in the Essex biota. The preservation can be quite amazing.

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RCFossils

Here are a few more worms. I have quite a few extras if anyone is looking to purchase some for their collection.

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RCFossils

The Mazon Creek fauna preserve several of the earliest known examples of the type in the fossil record. Here is a sea wasp which has changed little in 300 million years. I am also attaching a picture of one of the earlest known lampreys. Several others include the earliest squid and hagfish.

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RCFossils

There are several dozen fish and sharks described from the deposit. All are rare and several are known from only one or two examples.

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RCFossils

Most of the shark material that is found is from juveniles although occasionally teeth and sections of fins have been found from larger individuals.

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RCFossils

Sometimes known as the age of cockroaches. The Pennsylvannian had insects wih wingspans of over two feet and giant millipedes (arthopleura) that could reach lengths of six feet! Although complete fossils have not been found, on rare occasions we find sections of these prehistoric giants.

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RCFossils

Although rare, there have been dozens of species of spiders and scorpions found in the Mazon Creek deposit.

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RCFossils

Here are a few extremely rare scorpions

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RCFossils

On rare occasions we find fossils that still have traces of the animals original color patterns. I am attaching an example of a set of insect wings an a fin off of a xenacanth shark. The shark fin is the only one of its kind ever found in the Mazon Creek deposit ad shows that apparently the xenacanth shark had a polk a dot pattern!

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RCFossils

There are lots of other unusual animals. I am attaching pictures of a few of the rarer types.

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RCFossils

Centipede & Millipede

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RCFossils

Aside from the ully Monster, there are several other enigmatic creatures in the MC biota. Esconichthys apopyris has been thought to be a grasshopper, larval lungfish or larval amphibian. The jury is still out. Palaeoxyris is now widely believed to be the egg case of a shark but in the past it was believed to be fruiting structures of Pennsylvannian aged plants. Several different types are known to occur. I am attaching pictures of the largest example hat I have evr seen.

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