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dalmanites14

Shuttle Meadow Formation

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dalmanites14

Hey

I was reading about Fossildude19's recent finds (great job Tim, beautiful fish) and wanted to go there this summer. If anyone has information about this site please share.

Dalmanites14

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Fossildude19

Dalmanites14,

The Shuttle Meadow FM outcrops range in distance from New Haven, CT, ... to Turners Falls, Massachusetts. In numerous different areas.
Many of the localities for fish are now on private or state land.

It is very difficult to obtain permission to any of these sites.
Most of the ones on State land only get visited by museums or colleges.

You would have to do quite a bit of research to find out :
A -Where the localities are.
B - Who owns the property, and obtain permission to collect.
Took me a really long time to do this. Years, in fact - and this was pre-internet for me. :blink:
Sorry, but that's the way it is, here in CT. :(

Regards,

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siteseer

That's the way it is in California too (and Texas and Florida and...).

I don't blame you for keeping your site secret because it is time-consuming work doing the research along with some cash outlay. It involves spending gas on trips to more than one library. Sometimes, it means a trip or two to a university library where they charge you to park and they charge you for a copy card and they charge you per photocopy. That doesn't count the hours spent looking through shelves and volumes with some searches going nowhere. Even when you track down some good locality info and buy a topo map or two, you can drive out to the site and find that it has a mall on top of it or is otherwise inaccessible.

You might drive and hike around for a couple of hours to find a similar outcrop and strike out there too. You might end up finding a spot, and after determining the landowner and securing permission, you still might not find anything. On the other hand you might find a roadcut that didn't look very good on the map and dig up a few decent specimens.

Like you said, that's pre-internet type research, but just today, I went to a USGS library and looked up a couple of articles. There's a lot of stuff online now but there's still a lot that isn't.

I hope no one on the forum thinks you're being stingy. You invested your own time and money into finding those unusual fishes so you deserve the payoff.

You know when library research isn't popular when almost every time you go, it's just you and the librarians.

Triassic fishes like that are rare in North America though I have seen a reference to a site in New Mexico...

You would have to do quite a bit of research to find out :

A -Where the localities are.

B - Who owns the property, and obtain permission to collect.

Took me a really long time to do this. Years, in fact - and this was pre-internet for me. :blink:

Sorry, but that's the way it is, here in CT. :(

Regards,

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Fossildude19

Thanks, Siteseer. I appreciate your support.

I don't think that many people understand the whys of it. If I know of sites, why not share them??

I have put an immense amount of time and effort in to this "hobby" : blood, sweat, and well, maybe not tears, but, ... disappointment does make an appearance (from time to time) into finding what I find.

I do tend to feel bad sometimes, about not always sharing my special sites,... but, I also am aware of site access being ruined by a few inconsiderate people. :unsure:

I try to carefully screen the people I bring with me to my sites, and sometimes even that isn't good enough. :( \

Thanks again, Siteseer.

Regards,

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siteseer

Tim,

I was talking about you to another FF member today. He's behind you all the way too. He and I have checked out a few spots around California looking for oddball stuff, and most of the time, it wasn't worth the gas. However, we often did it on the way to where we knew we would find other stuff. Fruitless side trips are valuable too since they can teach you where not to revisit or perhaps revisit only after a rain before finally crossing it off the list of possibilities.

All anyone has to do is read danwoehr's monthly fossil collecting reports to see what happens when you do a lot of homework and legwork. I wonder if anyone out there thinks he's just really lucky. After starting to read his reports, I knew he was a guy who has been to a library or two (or three). He also has a good idea when to visit a site and when to let it go for another year or two.

Yeah, others shouldn't think less of you for not posting the location(s). Anyone who has collected for a few years has heard about one or two greedy people who messed up a site for many other people (angering the landowner by leaving trash, leaving gates open that were supposed to be closed, etc.). Yet, you've still risked a few spots even after that.

I don't want to sound like I'm hammering on anyone either. I hope everyone realizes the great generosity of those that do provide site info. It's not just like a tip to a good burrito place (though that's valuable in its own right). I've noticed that when some experienced collectors see that you're serious and have done your own homework elsewhere, they are more likely to point you in a direction.

Good luck in your Triassic fishing,

Jess

Thanks, Siteseer. I appreciate your support.

I don't think that many people understand the whys of it. If I know of sites, why not share them??

I have put an immense amount of time and effort in to this "hobby" : blood, sweat, and well, maybe not tears, but, ... disappointment does make an appearance (from time to time) into finding what I find.

I do tend to feel bad sometimes, about not always sharing my special sites,... but, I also am aware of site access being ruined by a few inconsiderate people. :unsure:

I try to carefully screen the people I bring with me to my sites, and sometimes even that isn't good enough. :( \

Thanks again, Siteseer.

Regards,

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Fossildude19

... I don't want to sound like I'm hammering on anyone either. I hope everyone realizes the great generosity of those that do provide site info. It's not just like a tip to a good burrito place (though that's valuable in its own right). I've noticed that when some experienced collectors see that you're serious and have done your own homework elsewhere, they are more likely to point you in a direction.

Good luck in your Triassic fishing,

Jess

Jess,

It's actually amazing how much information is out there. You just have to put time and effort in to look for it.

I had to do it the hard way, and am now enjoying researching more than I used to, but the whole process taught me a lot about my quest for fossils. Looking back, I wouldn't trade those experiences in for anything. I think it's part of the process of this hobby to learn and strive and struggle to be able to really enjoy the rewards of finding the fossils, instead of just having them handed to you.

I still have to work hard to get the fossils I find. I am that much more appreciative of the things I do find, because of it.

I think that in the fast food instant gratification society we live in has fostered a belief that if I want something, I should just get it.

I think that devalues experience, and makes for an unsatisfied and unsatisfying public.

To anyone wanting to find fossils, go to the locations that are known and productive, and get your feet wet. Then dive in, do your own due dilligence, and then you can enjoy the sense of accomplishment that comes from being able to say - I found that, on my own.

Just my opinion.

To anyone who wants to do the research, you can start by doing a google search using the terms in this post.

This is the best way to start to research fossils in CT.

Thank you again, Jess, for helping to make a very valid point.

Best Regards,

Edited by Fossildude19

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flyguy784

Jess,

It's actually amazing how much information is out there. You just have to put time and effort in to look for it.

I had to do it the hard way, and am now enjoying researching more than I used to, but the whole process taught me a lot about my quest for fossils. Looking back, I wouldn't trade those experiences in for anything. I think it's part of the process of this hobby to learn and strive and struggle to be able to really enjoy the rewards of finding the fossils, instead of just having them handed to you.

I still have to work hard to get the fossils I find. I am that much more appreciative of the things I do find, because of it.

I think that in the fast food instant grarification society we live in has fostered a belief that if I want something, I should just get it.

I think that devalues experience, and makes for an unsatisfied and unsatisfying public.

To anyone wanting to find fossils, go to the locations that are known and productive, and get your feet wet. Then dive in, do your own due dilligence, and then you can enjoy the sense of accomplishment that comes from being able to say - I found that, on my own.

Just my opinion.

To anyone who wants to do the research, you can start by doing a google search using the terms in this post.

This is the best way to start to research fossils in CT.

Thank you again, Jess, for helping to make a very valid point.

Best Regards,

I agree with Tim whole heartedly. While it is fun to exchange/inform others of "good" sites, the real fun is digging in, finding an obscure location mentioned in old litterature. Pull out the geo map, the topo, the satellite map and drive on out there. It's time consuming, expensive (fuel), frought with dissapointment and hard work. Then that day happens, bingo, you find it. It's thru the site research you'll learn, learn the different formations and the beasts within. It gives you a deeper understanding and appreciation of how all this happened. I just wish the words were a little easier to understand. Yikes! Why couldn't those Romans just use english like everybody else.

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vertman

I just wanted to throw a word of support in as well. I agree with what you guys are saying. When I was much younger and new to fossil collecting it was the posession that I sought so hard to obtain. Through years of experience, research, time, effort, money, etc. I have grown into a type of collecting where I actually enjoy finding new sites as much or more than I enjoy finding or posessing nice specimens. I am probably guilty of becoming too reclusive, after years of leading field trips for a well-known local fossil club, but even that has taught me a lot.

Well done on those fossil fish, sir! Enjoy the fruits of your labor. What is it Dan always says, "to the motivated go the spoils" or something to that effect?

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DeloiVarden

Yep, keep it secret. I am always amazed when someone approaches me asking me about where I found a tooth and then acts insulted when I keep it vague or flat out tell them that I don't mean to affend, but I would rather keep it to myself. It isn't like honey holes will yield forever and they won't yield long at all if 200 people know about it. Most will insist they will not tell anyone, but then they go there with there buddy, buddies friend, and buddies cousin, etc. They are also quick to give up the spot in exchange for info on new spots from someone else and it isn't long before they or someone else is posting the sites all over every forum. I always try to keep a few spots that have okay finds to tell folks who insist or just seem real nice (mostly the later). But there are some spots I will only go to alone.

Having said this Dalmanites14, I have asked about spots myself. So it isn't the asking that I think is bad, only the villianizing when you don't get the info you were hopeing for. So ask, but understand when you don't get an easy answer. If you are looking for a spot, don't give up. Be willing to do the research, take some exploration trips, keep asking (nicely)! But most likely, it will be research and many hours of fruitless searching before you find that spot. But it will be even more rewarding when you do!

Happy Hunting!

Edited by DeloiVarden

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jpc

I just found this discussion, and I will chime in supporting fossildude19 and siteseer. D-14, don't give up. Doing the homework is indeed half the fun, and makes the rewards all the more rewarding. And it is a thrill to learn hpow to use the system, from the library to the land ownership records down at the county courthouse.

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oilshale
You might drive and hike around for a couple of hours to find a similar outcrop and strike out there too. You might end up finding a spot, and after determining the landowner and securing permission, you still might not find anything. On the other hand you might find a roadcut that didn't look very good on the map and dig up a few decent specimens.
I fully agree - it's exactly the thrill of the chase which attracts me and yes, as jpc said: Doing the homework is indeed half the fun and makes the rewards all the more rewarding.

Thomas

PS: And believe me - I would really like to go myself and find out where Tim's claims are. But it wouldn't be of any fun if he just would tell me...

Edited by oilshale

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Uncle Siphuncle

I have lived both sides of this discussion over the years. 9 years ago I was a rank neophyte and would have loved to see open sharing of site info. But with heavy investment of effort and $$$ over the years, I don't see it this way anymore. Finding virgin sites is the cat's meow...however returning to proven productive sites and finding them in prime condition is wonderful as well.

I try to size up repeat potential of each site I find, then decide exactly how thinly I prefer to slice the pie going forward. I have sites I like to visit alone or with my son or girlfriend every time. Other sites allow me to haul in a buddy every now and then, and still have a sustainable venue going forward. By very clearly explaining that I use my sites to entertain a number of people, not just the guest of the day, and getting each guest to promise to comply with my wishes, I've been able to take over 50 people plus museums and universities to one really good site of mine, and all of our collections have benefitted because all 50 have demonstrated mature behavior.

I love sharing this experience with others, however I try to do so in such a manner than minimizes risk of loss of control of what I've worked for. Historically, only about 10% of my guests have reciprocated with sites of similar value, and I don't run a site soup kitchen, so as one might surmise, it is possible to lose sites faster than new ones can be found, with all of that effort and expense falling on me. So these days my son and girlfriend generally get the nod at my better spots, followed by collectors whom I've known and trusted for years, some of whom enjoy reciprocating with sites of like value. I tend to work enthusiastically with long distance collectors, treating each other to top shelf field experiences. With over $50,000 and 130,000-150,000 road and air miles poured into collecting trips in the last 9 years, it is easy to see why I feel invested in my site log.

However when I see the combination of personality, collecting philosophy, and old fashioned respect that suits me, I invite people who may have nothing to give in return. They understand the natural laws of reaping and sowing and therefore are not likely to get greedy, take on an air of self entitlement to what I've worked for, or make general nuisances of themselves. They don't make ends meet through a "free lunch" mentality. They patiently wait for a repeat invite without working behind my back or leaning into me for a repeat. If there are sites I prefer to work alone, they understand and accept this.

I try to lead by example by assuming when I'm a guest that an invite constitutes a one day pass, and I don't give up the locale info to others. If I feel inclined to share site info, I make sure its either extremely well known, or something I found myself, not something that was shared with me unless the original nice guy says its OK. Anything else would just be bad form. Instead I'm grateful to have a one day snapshot at someone else's site. I allow them to hunt their choice of real estate at their site and try not to crowd them. If I want more of the same, I try to take what I've learned and apply it far away.

We sort of get one shot at reputation in this gig. Part of my reputation is that I hunt hard; another facet is that I'm necessarily rather tight lipped about site info. Absent from my reputation is the propensity to pirate other people's sites by rationalizing an "acceptable" statute of limitations, telling myself I'd eventually find it anyway, etc.

So yes I do share site info quite often, in fact I've helped at least a couple hundred collectors over the years, but I choose my company with some deliberation. I share sites of low personal priority with people I don't know very well, and the better sites with people I know and trust, especially those who have proven helpful. If someone doesn't understand my playing of cards close to the vest, I can only suggest that they spend the time and money to find great sites, share them in confidence, feel the disappointment of being taken advantage of, then come back and talk to me. We'll see eye to eye then.

I should be able to put out some cool reports this year that I'm still working on, and much of that success comes from working with great people, and I'll jump at the opportunity to help them in like fashion going forward.

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non-remanié

All new collectors should read this. Thanks Dan.

I have lived both sides of this discussion over the years. 9 years ago I was a rank neophyte and would have loved to see open sharing of site info. But with heavy investment of effort and $$$ over the years, I don't see it this way anymore. Finding virgin sites is the cat's meow...however returning to proven productive sites and finding them in prime condition is wonderful as well.

I try to size up repeat potential of each site I find, then decide exactly how thinly I prefer to slice the pie going forward. I have sites I like to visit alone or with my son or girlfriend every time. Other sites allow me to haul in a buddy every now and then, and still have a sustainable venue going forward. By very clearly explaining that I use my sites to entertain a number of people, not just the guest of the day, and getting each guest to promise to comply with my wishes, I've been able to take over 50 people plus museums and universities to one really good site of mine, and all of our collections have benefitted because all 50 have demonstrated mature behavior.

I love sharing this experience with others, however I try to do so in such a manner than minimizes risk of loss of control of what I've worked for. Historically, only about 10% of my guests have reciprocated with sites of similar value, and I don't run a site soup kitchen, so as one might surmise, it is possible to lose sites faster than new ones can be found, with all of that effort and expense falling on me. So these days my son and girlfriend generally get the nod at my better spots, followed by collectors whom I've known and trusted for years, some of whom enjoy reciprocating with sites of like value. I tend to work enthusiastically with long distance collectors, treating each other to top shelf field experiences. With over $50,000 and 130,000-150,000 road and air miles poured into collecting trips in the last 9 years, it is easy to see why I feel invested in my site log.

However when I see the combination of personality, collecting philosophy, and old fashioned respect that suits me, I invite people who may have nothing to give in return. They understand the natural laws of reaping and sowing and therefore are not likely to get greedy, take on an air of self entitlement to what I've worked for, or make general nuisances of themselves. They don't make ends meet through a "free lunch" mentality. They patiently wait for a repeat invite without working behind my back or leaning into me for a repeat. If there are sites I prefer to work alone, they understand and accept this.

I try to lead by example by assuming when I'm a guest that an invite constitutes a one day pass, and I don't give up the locale info to others. If I feel inclined to share site info, I make sure its either extremely well known, or something I found myself, not something that was shared with me unless the original nice guy says its OK. Anything else would just be bad form. Instead I'm grateful to have a one day snapshot at someone else's site. I allow them to hunt their choice of real estate at their site and try not to crowd them. If I want more of the same, I try to take what I've learned and apply it far away.

We sort of get one shot at reputation in this gig. Part of my reputation is that I hunt hard; another facet is that I'm necessarily rather tight lipped about site info. Absent from my reputation is the propensity to pirate other people's sites by rationalizing an "acceptable" statute of limitations, telling myself I'd eventually find it anyway, etc.

So yes I do share site info quite often, in fact I've helped at least a couple hundred collectors over the years, but I choose my company with some deliberation. I share sites of low personal priority with people I don't know very well, and the better sites with people I know and trust, especially those who have proven helpful. If someone doesn't understand my playing of cards close to the vest, I can only suggest that they spend the time and money to find great sites, share them in confidence, feel the disappointment of being taken advantage of, then come back and talk to me. We'll see eye to eye then.

I should be able to put out some cool reports this year that I'm still working on, and much of that success comes from working with great people, and I'll jump at the opportunity to help them in like fashion going forward.

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Uncle Siphuncle

I don't speak for everyone. This is just my current opinion after dealing with lots of personalities over the years. No one can ever fault you for doing your own work, and when its time to share, sharing something you worked for in exchange for something a buddy worked for. Its not the easiest way to find stuff, but the rewards of blazing your own trail are much more satisfying than asking for sites all the time and ending up with seconds. For me its good to get this sort of thing out in the open before joining someone new in the field. If we have divergent philosophies on this subject, I find it best to shake hands and talk about something other than site info.

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