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piranha

TFF member MB has coauthored another excellent paper on a spectacular crab from the Grayson Formation in Waco, Texas. This exciting discovery represents one of only a few times a fossil crab with composite eyes is preserved and probably the first occurrence of three-dimensional crab eyes in the fossil record.

 

Congrats Àlex!! :fistbump:

 

Vega, F.J., Jackson, J., & Ossó, À (2014)

Exceptional preservation of a late Cenomanian (Late Cretaceous) crab from Texas, U.S.A.

Boletín de la Sociedad Geológica Mexicana 66(1):215-221

 

OPEN ACCESS PDF

 

 

 

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squalicorax

Quite amazing

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Uncle Siphuncle

Ojos locos! Strikingly cool find.

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Fossildude19

Excellent!

Thanks for the link, Scott, and Congratulations to MB!

Regards,

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MB

Please, take a look to the second author... you know? ;)

Edited by MB

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PFOOLEY

Way to go John and MB! Good work.

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erose

A couple of us FF members were there that muddy day. When John got back to me and told me what he had after washing the mud off I was just amazed. I found one tiny crab that day but it was not 25% as well preserved as this one.

Us amateurs can still find some of the best stuff.

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fossilized6s

Wow! Pretty amazing! Congrats!

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Roz

What a beauty! Congratulations, MB and JohnJ!!! :yay-smiley-1:

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piranha

When I first read the paper I was so excited to see those incredible crab eyes, I didn't connect the dots that JJ was also involved in the project.

 

Congrats again! :1-SlapHands_zpsbb015b76:

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Wrangellian

Impressive.. I wonder why this is nowhere near as common as finding trilobites with eyes preserved - Is/was the chemistry different between the two types?

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Auspex

I think that a crab's eyestalks, being articulated, are much more likely to become detached after death than a trilobite's.

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JohnJ

Thanks, everyone. :)

It was a pleasure to work with Alex and Dr. Vega on this little crab. I have wanted to learn more about the process involved in writing a paleontological manuscript. These gentlemen were very patient and instructive during the project. I sincerely appreciate their friendship and integrity.

Since we were going to publish on the remarkable eye preservation, I had to hold off posting any photos of this little, crustacean jewel. Yet, it certainly was a memorable hunt last June with Erich (erose), Mike (mikecable) and Gary (gwestbrook). Little did I know the bean-sized fossil would be so well preserved when it and an equal amount of mud went into my fossil box. I'll try to pull together more details and photos in the next few days.

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erose

I think this a great example of how we can all keep adding to science thru our individual efforts. And john has his fingers in a few more pies that have yet to come out of the oven.

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RichW9090

7 mm across! snarge, that is tiny! Good eyes, John!

And no, I didn't say *snarge*. I said *d*a*m*n*

Edited by RichW9090

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Ludwigia

Way to go you guys!

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Ash

7 mm across! snarge, that is tiny! Good eyes, John!

And no, I didn't say *snarge*. I said *d*a*m*n*

I type "Snarge" now instead, and say it :P All cause of this forum.

Good find guys!

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Opisthotriton

Wow, so tiny but so well preserved! Really great that you got to be part of the manuscript.

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PFOOLEY

John, this is an amazing find...obviously. I can't stop lookin' at it...looks alive! Quite amazing and would have been hard for me to let go of. Very, very nice find. Congrats on your acknowledgement as well as the opportunity.

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PFOOLEY

Oh, by the way...it's amazing. :)

Edited by PFOOLEY

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JohnJ

Thank you very much for the comments. :D

Back in June of last year, the day started off with a severe thunderstorm pounding the area we hunted. But by the middle of the day, the four of us (Erich, Mike, Gary and I) had made some very nice finds. There was so much mud on everything, it wasn't until I got home that I had my first good look at things. In between all the slips and slides, I found two crabs. One was a partial, heavily pyritized ventral piece that I cleaned first. It was interesting and I knew looking at it, later, under my microscope would let me see more details. However, it was when I cleaned the second crab that I thought I might have picked up something only a few months old. Really. I was standing at the sink, looking this little crab...and it was looking back at me! I sniffed it. I racked my brain to remember if there were any modern crustaceans like it this far inland. I sniffed it again. I wondered if someone had dumped an aquarium with some crabs in it. I sniffed it one more time...it didn't smell the first time and it still didn't smell.

The scene quickly shifted to my fossil desk where I pulled the flexible arm of a magnifying lamp to align with my magnifying visor. I looked at the little bean-sized crab and just said, "Whoa!" I had a small fossil and I needed to get some decent images. Over the next few days, I showed Erich (erose) and I got in contact with Alex (MB) - his initial response: "This is the email I was waiting for... !!!!!" The images slowly improved enough to show the incredible degree of this crab's preservation and, a few weeks later, Alex informed me that Dr. Francisco J. Vega was willing to collaborate in an article on "Popeye". Yes, "Popeye" was the name that my wife suggested and it 'stuck'.

So began a great deal of correspondence, research, countless photographs, and a few trips to the Non-vertebrate Paleontology Lab (UT Austin) that ended in a nice collaborative effort. It was a true pleasure to work on this project with Alex and Francisco. "Popeye" and the other partial crab now reside at the NPL in Austin, TX.

The partial pyritized crab

post-420-0-65028000-1398836633_thumb.jpg post-420-0-20295500-1398836321_thumb.jpg post-420-0-85022600-1399056122_thumb.jpg

Additional chelae found

post-420-0-29086900-1398836369_thumb.jpg

Various views of "Popeye"

post-420-0-17150100-1398836360_thumb.jpg post-420-0-04008100-1398836588_thumb.jpg post-420-0-31155000-1398836629_thumb.jpg

"Popeye's" eyes

post-420-0-72889200-1399055955_thumb.jpg post-420-0-47504700-1399055958_thumb.jpg post-420-0-89941300-1399055956_thumb.jpg

post-420-0-08192200-1399056011_thumb.jpg post-420-0-64956800-1399056016_thumb.jpg

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Uncle Siphuncle

that was extremely quick turn on a paper. my impression is that i'll have time to die and become pyritized before some of my donated material is written up, some going on 10 years. it pays to find someone ready to work on donated material "right now".

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Roz

I love Popeye :wub: and loved hearing more of the hunt and back-story when you thought

he might be modern. I see why. The shape Popeye is in is just amazing! Great

that it all worked out so well! Very cool that you got your feet wet with the writing side

also! A win for everyone.. :D

And your images are fantastic!

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fossisle

JohnJ very cool find and a great paper!!

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RichW9090

John: Yes, a find this "cool" often gets fast tracked through the publication process, not to mention the research and writing phases, which can take years. I've had some of the pronghorn fossils I'm working on for 10 years or more, and likely won't have time to write them up until I retire. But something spectacular seems to motivate everyone, from collector to researcher to editor.

Rich

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