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bthemoose

I made it out to Douglas Point on the Potomac River yesterday morning for a chilly Maryland Paleocene (Aquia Formation) fossil hunt. Temperatures started in the upper 20s Fahrenheit and eventually climbed into the more comfortable 40s though by that time the tide had substantially come in. The banks of the river were ice free but the sand was hard packed and frozen.

 

The pickings were fairly slim by this site's standards, which means I found dozens rather than hundreds of shark teeth over roughly 4 hours. No spectacular finds on this trip, though I found a decent enough variety, and a few less common things including my second partial ratfish plate and a couple of partial ray plates.

 

Though cold, it was extremely peaceful on the banks of the Potomac just after sunrise.

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My phone battery really hates the cold so I wasn't able to capture too many in situ shots, but here are a few. The two shark teeth are from the ever abundant sand tiger Striatolamia striata.

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It was actually a pretty gorgeous day by the end--just not the right tide conditions by then for fossil hunting!

1901816063_DouglasPoint-5.thumb.jpeg.5b9638d180e42252b46bbd26e6f7ebd7.jpeg

 

Below are a few shots of some of my better/less common finds.

 

From left to right -- Paraorthacodus clarkii (this one's pretty worn down unfortunately), Cretalamna appendiculata (not too uncommon and this one's tip is chipped, but if I'm not to going to find an Otodus, I at least want to find a Cretalamna!), a nice Palaeohypotodus rutoti, Squatina prima, and (I think) Jaekelotodus robustus:

1523100246_DouglasPoint-6.thumb.jpeg.ffe02a6845ecb5a124f4b1e2f9bc1d87.jpeg

 

The two partial ray plates and a piece of turtle shell:

1528282085_DouglasPoint-7.thumb.jpeg.785398c12d1ff91d19e359160c3eff35.jpeg2035590204_DouglasPoint-8.thumb.jpeg.a4ca1fbe3fc6f3962b19bbc23f2dea1c.jpeg

 

The partial ratfish plate, a Turritella sp. steinkern (these are common finds except this is the first one I've found that's hollow and made of ironstone vs. the more usual sedimented material), two shark/ray verts, and a small bony fish vert:

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Thanks for looking!

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Jeffrey P

I'd say you didn't do too shabby and your time there in the cold was well spent. Congrats. That piece of turtle shell looks more like a croc scute to me which, if I'm right would be a bigger deal. I have yet to find a ratfish jaw piece there though I know others have- so very good show on that. The partial ray plates are also on my shopping list though I'm certainly hoping for a complete one someday. Thanks for sharing. 

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bthemoose
10 minutes ago, Jeffrey P said:

I'd say you didn't do too shabby and your time there in the cold was well spent. Congrats. That piece of turtle shell looks more like a croc scute to me which, if I'm right would be a bigger deal. I have yet to find a ratfish jaw piece there though I know others have- so very good show on that. The partial ray plates are also on my shopping list though I'm certainly hoping for a complete one someday. Thanks for sharing. 


Thanks — I’d be happy to be wrong about the turtle shell/croc scute! There’s a type of turtle shell from the area that has a bumpy/ridged texture, but I’m not that confident in the ID. 

 

This is my second ratfish jaw piece in three trips after none previously. Either I’ve gotten lucky or just better at identifying them—I think probably both. I found both fossils in the water and they looked like pieces of wood on first glance.

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sharko69

Great finds! I was hoping to get there myself but my job situation changed and I no longer will be traveling to MD. So sad, will have to live through others posts like yours. Keep sharing. Thanks.

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HemiHunter

Nice report, Bruce!  

7 hours ago, Jeffrey P said:

That piece of turtle shell looks more like a croc scute

Looks like croc osteoderm to me, too.  I found a partial scute at Purse myself a few weeks back. I love finding the reptile material there!

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bthemoose
11 hours ago, sharko69 said:

Great finds! I was hoping to get there myself but my job situation changed and I no longer will be traveling to MD. So sad, will have to live through others posts like yours. Keep sharing. Thanks.


Thanks! Hopefully you can make a fossil trip to Maryland at some point just for fun. Between the Potomac and Calvert Cliffs, there’s some nice variety. In the meantime, you’re certainly doing well closer to home! I’ve been plotting my future fossil trips to Texas for months. Much of my family is there so I have an excuse. Maybe sometime in the Fall...
 

8 hours ago, HemiHunter said:

Nice report, Bruce!  

Looks like croc osteoderm to me, too.  I found a partial scute at Purse myself a few weeks back. I love finding the reptile material there!


Awesome, I’ll follow your and @Jeffrey P’s ID. I need to look through my previous material to see if I have any others misidentified, but I’m pretty sure this is my first one. 

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Clint08

Thanks for the pics! I was over at purse that morning. Other than a couple nice sized croc teeth and half a small ray plate there wasn't to much out there other than the usual smaller teeth. The frozen sand definitely was not favorable.

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bthemoose
11 hours ago, Clint08 said:

Thanks for the pics! I was over at purse that morning. Other than a couple nice sized croc teeth and half a small ray plate there wasn't to much out there other than the usual smaller teeth. The frozen sand definitely was not favorable.

 

Thanks, and always nice to find croc teeth!

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HemiHunter
11 hours ago, Clint08 said:

Other than a couple nice sized croc teeth and half a small ray plate

Hah--I would be thrilled with those!  Post some pics!

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bthemoose

I was able to make it out again yesterday. The conditions were much better—it was a gorgeous spring day—and it’s always nice to get out midweek when possible! I had the place virtually all to myself and found multiple small (under an inch) Otodus, some croc teeth, and other things.
 

My favorite find though may be this perfect little devilish looking tooth, which I believe is an Odontaspis winkleri (could also be Brachycarcharias lerichei though there are no striations):

 

BCC11727-B6E9-4CB5-805B-CC6932E14C22.jpeg.7744851c4a663cb13a56a2b88711ae16.jpeg
 

Below are a few other shots, including of my best Otodus of the day.

 

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Clint08
2 hours ago, bthemoose said:

I was able to make it out again yesterday. The conditions were much better—it was a gorgeous spring day—and it’s always nice to get out midweek when possible! I had the place virtually all to myself and found multiple small (under an inch) Otodus, some croc teeth, and other things.
 

My favorite find though may be this perfect little devilish looking tooth, which I believe is an Odontaspis winkleri (could also be Brachycarcharias lerichei though there are no striations):

 

BCC11727-B6E9-4CB5-805B-CC6932E14C22.jpeg.7744851c4a663cb13a56a2b88711ae16.jpeg
 

Below are a few other shots, including of my best Otodus of the day.

 

004D8918-189B-4F3C-9F0A-4DDC34F70AAC.thumb.jpeg.dbcf634958a3499ae215f30628c0db98.jpeg


E4852A41-F320-4FC1-BFAA-4E54FB85AE51.thumb.jpeg.9763df95e8857748676f8bd8151df40a.jpeg

 

E9FEFA57-303D-4AD7-BA74-420A317C224A.thumb.jpeg.192d6559937941213fdea65062569079.jpeg

 

283A12BE-1224-4586-8D18-5912531351DF.thumb.jpeg.29e1b86a2ebe70c530bb2d22ba0afb15.jpeg

 

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Awesome looking finds, really love that first one. Looks like it came right out of the formation.

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Clint08
18 hours ago, HemiHunter said:

Hah--I would be thrilled with those!  Post some pics!

Haha, I was pretty happy with the croc teeth. One is completely banged up but the size is nice. 

644AB85D-914B-45D4-8E54-9925AEEEA434.jpeg

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Jeffrey P

Nice finds! That Odontaspis tooth is gorgeous. Congrats. Reminds me why the Aquia continues to be worth exploring. 

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Northern Neck

Really good finds.  That place is becoming more and more packed everytime  we swing by.  

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