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Had a good trip yesterday, found some uncommon stuff


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With the rain earlier this week and the sunny, clear, and cool weather yesterday, I decided to take off a day from work and go rock hunting. I decided to head to the Sulphur, IN road cut. A few days before, I reviewed the paper linked from the Falls of the Ohio web page. I had been to Sulphur once before, so I had a small collection of blastoids, some small brachiopods, and some crinoid stems. After rereading the paper, I really wanted to find some of the less common fossils at this site: a shark tooth and a trilobite. Secondary goal was to find a crinoid stem and calyx on a plate.

I arrived a little after 10am. Pulled on my jacket, backpack, and hat and climbed up the rocks to the shale layer. Found some little blastoids, bits and pieces of crinoids. Then, to my amazement, I found this:

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Can you guys confirm that this is a trilobite piece? I've only found them at St. Leon before, and this looks different from those.

I carefully deposited that in my tacklebox and moved on. Just a few minutes later, I found my largest blastoid (the one on the left):

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I kept hunting the shale layer, then moved up and investigated the upper limestone a bit, but it was not productive. Took a break, ate a Clif bar, drank some water, and walked around the bend to hunt the other end of the road cut. Eventually the shale layer reappeared and I found some more small blastoids and a small plate with a crinoid stem and crumbled calyx. I stuffed the plate in my backpack, hence no photo yet.

Kept hunting the shale and something weird caught my eye. At first glance, I thought it was a large bryozoan, but for some reason it was very black. I picked it up for a closer look, that looks like a...holy cow!!

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I found a Mississippian shark tooth!!!

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Best I can tell, this is Petalodus?

I was already tired and hungry, and now I was scared my tacklebox would get dumped accidentally, so I called it a day.

I was am really happy with the tooth and what I think is a trilo piece. Both uncommon fossils for this site. I never thought I would actually find a Mississippian shark tooth. Especially one that appears to be complete, no breakage.

Is it safe to say that Petalodus is a fairly uncommon fossil? I only saw 4 listed on Ebay and a small number on private seller sites. Not interested in selling, just trying to assess how common/rare it is.

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Castle Rock

CONGRATULATIONS Jim! You had a GREAT day! I would love to see some images of the location. Keep us all posted on additional trips and finds! Dave

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The first pic is a trilo-butt, aka pygidium. In my experience Petalodus is an uncommon find, especially a complete specimen. I hunted Mississippian limestone in Kentucky for years and found only two complete Petalodus.

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You had a day that will be hard to match; well done!

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Fossildude19

Excellent finds and report!

Congratulations on the impressive finds.

Thanks for posting them.

Regards,

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Excellent day! That Petalodus is very sweet. It looks to be absolutely complete. They are hard enough to find, harder still in that condition.

Don

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Nice finds! Congratulations!

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Great 'stuff'.

Some rarer specimens...the trilo, tooth.

Is your tooth special? Let's put it this way. I was out in our badlands yesterday and came across a couple Tyrannosaur teeth. On a scale of 1 to 10, I get about 6 in excitement. When out collecting in our mountains and I find a nice Carboniferous shark specimen like yours...about a 9 out of 10 in excitement.

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  • That is a nice Petalodus. Be real careful prepping because they are usually very fragile, I have broken several.

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  • That is a nice Petalodus. Be real careful prepping because they are usually very fragile, I have broken several.

I'm not even going to try. I have very little experience prepping and I've found that I'm rather impatient with it. This is going to stay just like it is. I can see the front of the root, and a bit of the back of the root. Most of the "blade" is exposed. Yeah, I'm not going to blow it up with my Dremel engraver. I'm happy with it just like it is.

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So it looks like the trilobite is likely Paladins Chesterensis aka Kaskia Chesterensis.

Further, it appears the tooth is most likely Petalodus Acuminatus. Based on a very good thread here, I would need to prep the root out to confirm. But given the locality and knowing it's Chesterian, it's highly likely that it's Acuminatus.

Edited by JimTh
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The pygidium is a good match with Kaskia sp. The attached figure is Kaskia rosei from the Mississippian of Indiana.

Brezinski 2008 stated: "The type specimen of Kaskia rosei is almost certainly conspecific with Kaskia chesterensis."

 

Accordingly, I would label it Kaskia sp.

 

IMG1.jpg

 

Brezinski, D.K. (2008)

Phylogenetics, systematics, paleoecology, and evolution of the trilobite genera Paladin and Kaskia from the United States.

Journal of Paleontology, 82(3):511-527

 

 

 

  • I found this Informative 1
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Excellent finds, especially that Petalodus tooth! I can well understand that you don't want to mess with it yourself, but I think you'd be even happier with it if you could find someone to prep it for you.

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The Mississippian shark teeth keep a coming! Great find, and thats a real nice trilo butt too!

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fossilized6s

Great day! Congrats on the killer finds.

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