Jump to content

Potential fossil sites


Lee Taylor

Recommended Posts

I have been doing some Google maps searching for sites that may yield a fossil or two. I found a few sites that look to me to have potential. Fortunately they are close to my house. I put the coordinates into my marine GPS and I am prepared to go take a look. What is your perception of these Google images from a fossil potential perspective?

 

b.png

c.png

d.png

Link to post
Share on other sites

I've had mixed luck with using Google Earth / Maps, if only because the images are not updated very often, at times a few years out of date. And if there is a large tree canopy, it is tough to discern if there is anything beneath it. Sometimes it just means taking a chance and seeing the site in person. Fortunately, these spots are closer to your home. They do look promising.  

  • I found this Informative 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Skip the web based version....it has issues. I use Google Earth Pro in conjunction with free USGS topo maps. Cross reference those and you are good to go!

 

Earth pro has a "time travel" function so you can compare satellite images over time. It is updated far more frequently than the web API.

  • I found this Informative 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

I am familiar with the tree canopy problem. I have noticed Google-my-maps is more current than the regular Google maps.

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

That's a great tip!

I also find that Google Earth is a bit of a resource pig, as it makes the fan on my laptop kick in if I spend more than a few minutes on it. :P 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hunting down sites "via remote" using journal articles or "intel" from the locals this way is my favorite part of the hobby. 3 out of 4 times, I'm usually within 100 meters of a site. 

  • I found this Informative 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the info King. What I find is that when I get on the water .... nothing looks anything like Google maps. So I have started using a marine GPS.
In the past I have found it difficult to find my way back to a good site because things change with time. If you have a good landmark .... like a huge hornets next (or similar), you can relocate the site. I now have my first marine GPS. Looking forward to using it. One of the functions I like is that I can plot paths that will keep me out of the shallows. I am tired of repairing and replacing props.

  • I found this Informative 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Definitely +1 to that, @LabRatKing. During the winter months, it is all about planning using the old literature and poring over maps. But the very best is indeed chatting up the locals, and before you know it an hour has gone by in a great conversation. Not too long ago, me and a field comrade were prospecting a little known site, and we got talking to an old farmer. After an hour, he told us to just go across his land as it was a shorter and more direct route to the spot we were looking for. Eventually he pulled out a little flask of rum, and we fetched a few beer from the trunk of the car. He even told us to help ourselves to the big yellow radishes that were not harvested. Boy, did they taste good!

  • I found this Informative 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I live in an area where phosphate is mined.... hence the grayish color in the photos. We also have lots of rivers. So in this area we follow the phosphate and the gravel. The water in this area washes the fossils out of the formations. The river bottoms are littered with fossils but they are not easy to get to. Some of the rivers can get quite dangerous. The creeks are popular here and so are excavations

Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Lee Taylor said:

Thanks for the info King. What I find is that when I get on the water .... nothing looks anything like Google maps. So I have started using a marine GPS.
In the past I have found it difficult to find my way back to a good site because things change with time. If you have a good landmark .... like a huge hornets next (or similar), you can relocate the site. I now have my first marine GPS. Looking forward to using it. One of the functions I like is that I can plot paths that will keep me out of the shallows. I am tired of repairing and replacing props.

Excellent. You should consider map and compass as back up. Personally, I get better results. Coastal navigation charts give you the best of both worlds-topo and extremely accurate updates and navigation.

Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Kane said:

Definitely +1 to that, @LabRatKing. During the winter months, it is all about planning using the old literature and poring over maps. But the very best is indeed chatting up the locals, and before you know it an hour has gone by in a great conversation. Not too long ago, me and a field comrade were prospecting a little known site, and we got talking to an old farmer. After an hour, he told us to just go across his land as it was a shorter and more direct route to the spot we were looking for. Eventually he pulled out a little flask of rum, and we fetched a few beer from the trunk of the car. He even told us to help ourselves to the big yellow radishes that were not harvested. Boy, did they taste good!

A spare case of beers in the trunk has led me to many a great site, or at the very least friendly access to see if a new site is around!

Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Lee Taylor said:

I live in an area where phosphate is mined.... hence the grayish color in the photos. We also have lots of rivers. So in this area we follow the phosphate and the gravel. The water in this area washes the fossils out of the formations. The river bottoms are littered with fossils but they are not easy to get to. Some of the rivers can get quite dangerous. The creeks are popular here and so are excavations

Not certain what the personal dredging regs are like for there, but for very little money you can build a simple bottom drag. You'd be surprised the treasures I have found when out sampling invertebrates and getting bottom samples for the lab!

Link to post
Share on other sites
Thomas.Dodson
8 hours ago, LabRatKing said:

Skip the web based version....it has issues. I use Google Earth Pro in conjunction with free USGS topo maps. Cross reference those and you are good to go!

 

Earth pro has a "time travel" function so you can compare satellite images over time. It is updated far more frequently than the web API.

+1 for Google Earth Pro. Aside from the USGS Topo maps and the time travel function it's easy enough to find PLSS overlays for cross-referencing plat maps and land ownership (if you're in a PLSS State) as well as good overlays for types of land ownership (good for finding BLM land).

  • I found this Informative 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Thomas.Dodson said:

+1 for Google Earth Pro. Aside from the USGS Topo maps and the time travel function it's easy enough to find PLSS overlays for cross-referencing plat maps and land ownership (if you're in a PLSS State) as well as good overlays for types of land ownership (good for finding BLM land).

Yep. Throw in county assessor maps and CoE GIS data and with a bit of work you you can find anything and not risk trespassing.

Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, Kane said:

means taking a chance and seeing the site in person

I think field reconnaissance is essential and relaxing activity even if you don't find what you want. Sites change with time and very often they are very small and depend on a suitable outcrop. For example, I visited a remote site mentioned in literature 3 times and didn't find an outcrop (overgrown). In this site I found an outcrop of literally 2 metres and got nice fossils (for that ammo zone) while our best pro paleontologists were surprised the site was even productive.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello Rumert....I looked at the photos in the link "In this site". SO extremely interesting to me how the earth and terrain are so similar a world apart from me. I will did up some more photos of fossil sites here for comparison. Also interesting is your apparent very good knowledge of the English language

 

  • I found this Informative 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
Uncle Siphuncle

You never know until you go.  As mentioned above, out of date imagery could result in a covered site...or an expanded one.  I explore all the time, and that’s why I’ve currently logged 956 sites that produced.  But times change and most aren’t as good now as the first few hits.  

Link to post
Share on other sites

The topography, stratigraphy, and earth movement and changes are very interesting to me personally. The area where I live (Charleston SC) was apparently underneath 50 feet of seawater at one point in the history of the earth. Now days our rivers and creeks cut into the fossil layers of the earth. I admire and appreciate the individuals that are searching for significant scientific discoveries but for me searching and finding is strictly a hobby. My mental interest seems to revolve around the history of life on earth and the fossil record.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

I've never found much in terms of fossils in small tidal creeks at low tide. I think the more fossily stuff is around the main harbor, Ashley, Stono, and ICW generally--all in places that have been dredged and where the spoil has been placed right on the banks.

 

I wanted to chime in on that very last GE photo you posted Lee: that site is a living shoreline installed by (I'm pretty sure) TNC and volunteers some time between 2012 - 2015. It's a number of oyster castle structures, which are interlocking cement blocks placed in the intertidal zone to recruit and grow oysters. I struggled around that site in 2017 taking measurements and it's a typical "soft" site by Low Country standards, which is to say one of the least hospitable places imaginable for a person afoot. The pluffiest of pluff mud, razor sharp oysters. Certainly not fossiliferous is my guess--but interesting to check out from your boat if you're into alternative oyster restoration and shoreline protection methods.

 

G

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for that insight into that photo. Being a long time local, I have viewed oyster farming up close and personal. I just did not recognize it from a Google maps perspective. I completely understand "least hospitable" because I have had pluff-mud up to my shins. The only reason I survived the pluff-mud was because it had "hard pan" underneath. I understand razor sharp oysters also. Having managed to get my jetski stuck on a sand bar mound behind Morris Island one evening, I proceeded to look underneath and clean the oyster shells from the intake. When I got back on the ski I was bleeding profusely from my knee and finger. I am not obsessed with fossils. I have more than my share. Now days I use fossil hunting as an excuse to get on the water.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...