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I had an amazing day up at my local spot collecting. There had been no new blasts or work at the quarry so I decided to scour the pit wall near the north end of a pond area near the road way down into the BobCaygeon formation material. Those who collect there will know the general area. . To my surprise I found very quickly a fortediscus edrioasteroid about 1 1/2 inches across. Will likely post something on it once it is prepped . I quickly noted that there was a crinoid layer about 3 inches above the layer the edrio was on and that there was a  layer about 3 inches below the edrio that I could make out tail sections from pleurocystites. Well five hours later we had taken out probably a ton of rock between two of us.We had to remove about 4 feet of overburden to get to the first layer. If only we had brought a 6 foot pry bar we would have been golden. Regardless we excavated about 10 feet of wall going back about 2 1/2 feet. My reward an edrioasteroid, a cyclosystoid, a plate with two unknown at this point large crinoid calyxes, 13 cycstites (a combination of pleurocystites and amycystites). My friends reward an edrioasteroid and some crinoids....

 

We will be back next weekend with some heavier bars and my friend the excavating machine Kane......

 

Here is some pictures of the first one I prepped this morning....

 

5999bb74a38a0_Pleurocrop3.thumb.jpg.a2cbb44ac74feec428ddc6cf2b0e604b.jpg

 

5999bb8585302_Pleurocrop1.thumb.jpg.4edd411e0576e31b934e17a824b73b33.jpg

 

We are blessed with some great collecting up here in Ontario Canada...... A number of you have been up to hunt with me over the years..... Hopefully more will make it in the future......

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sixgill pete

Fantastic specimen!!!

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That's a real beauty! The preservation on that is exquisite. You guys truly hit the mother lode! Getting excited, and will bring the big bar along to help move some rock.

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Arizona Chris

Superb.  I would probably faint if I found something like that. ;)   we just get boring crinoids here in Az.....

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Too cool! Nothing better than weird echinoderms.

 

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Fossildude19

Great job, Malcolm! :wub: 

Can't wait to see some of the other things you found.

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Nice! Very nice!

Good luck on the return.

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Great stuff, Malcolm :fistbump: Have fun with quarryman Kane on your return trip! Wish I could join you.

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Incredible specimen! Great find and prep. Congratulations, Malcolm. Looking forward to seeing more from the Echinoderm Heaven.

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crabfossilsteve

Wow Malcolmt,  very nice cystoid.  That layer you are talking about sure sounds incredible.  Look forward to seeing the prepped out specimen of those other echinoderms.  Boy I sure miss collecting up there.  It sure could produce some spectacular specimens of trilobites and echinoderms.  Nice

 

 

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Nothing like hitting the mother lode to get the heart racing!  I sure do miss Ontario fossil hunting. I'm looking forward to seeing the rest of your finds. :popcorn: :drool:

 

Don

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Wow, @Malcolmt - I am speechless... :faint:

 

Viola will be turning 7 in October so we only have to wait another 9 years until we can join you...looking forward to it already!!! :)

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7 hours ago, Malcolmt said:

Here is some pictures of the first one I prepped this morning....

One as good as this should be in the fossil of the month contest.:thumbsu:

Since You have not entered it into the contest,  I suspect You have better in the holding pen?:headscratch:

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Ynot... I won the IFOTM a number of years ago so since then I have not really posted anything in the contest. But you are correct I did find stuff on Saturday that are likely better multiple species cystite plates that I have not prepped yet. Hopefully I will get a few hours today to do some.Right now my personal (not other peoples) prep holding pen is literally bursting at the seams.

 

 

Here is the spot we were excavating. At this point we have removed about 5 feet of rock down to this ledge. I am actually standing on a very small ledge that is about 10 feet above a pool of water that is currently about 10 feet deep.

 

599aee0a05c62_edrio3insitu.thumb.jpg.4980b922213715943a4b430249a8c0fb.jpg

 

This is the edrio in situ that starting the serious look at this area....

 

599aee41b63ae_edrio2crop.thumb.jpg.25a796a3aa170b0b2e2358b30134120c.jpg

 

 

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Well it turns out that my 2 crinoids are actually 1 (2 are not crinoids). Spent about 3 hours so far prepping them. When found all that was visible was the edge ridges of the arms of the 2 on the right. The one on the left is I believe a Paleocrinus. I have no clue what the two are on the right( I do now but read on and FossilDawg will jump in with what they are). I certainly have never found them before. This is Ordovician age about 5 feet down from the top of the BobCaygeon. 

 

3_Crinoids_8-19-2017.thumb.jpg.67859cae79fec6a3f0cc726080209fd0.jpg

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Excellent cystoids! They look delicate - are you stabilizing them, or are they pretty much fine as they are (if they aren't handled too much)? 

 

The detail on these is phenomenal! :envy:

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I believe you have found two specimens of Astrocystites ottawaensis.  Here is a link to a photo of one from Crinus's web site.  This is an edrioblastoid, a cystoid that was once thought to be ancestral to the blastoids, though it now is thought that blastoids evolved through a different lineage.  Astrocystites is one of the rarest of the Ordovician echinoderms, most collectors never see even an isolated plate of one of these.  Congratulations on an exceptionally rare find! :wub: :envy: :drool:

 

Don C

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There is no gluing or stabilization of any kind on these . They are firmly embedded in the matrix with zero flaking. Quite unlike the pleurocystites and even more so the amecystites  from the the same spot that are flakey as heck and requires constantly gluing as you prep 

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FossilDawg... I believe that you are correct in your identification. I did not even consider Astrocystites as I have never seen more than a tiny fragment before and that was a bit of a stretch. The hand drawn picture in Hessin's book is not the best and you would be hard pressed to match these up with what he has.

 

FYI I just got an email back from Crinus ( I had emailed him earlier today) and he also believes it to be Astrocystites. I am feeling pretty good about this find right now... Big smile on this old bearded face.....

 

Here is his quote

 

OMG. These are the SUPER rarest thing to find.  They are edrioblastoids. Unbelievable. I am soooooo jealous. I have one on my web page. They are Astrocystites. 

Congratulations. Best find of the decade

 

J.

 

I suspect Kane and I will be moving a lot of rock this weekend..... I am a big believer that where there is one or two there are more.....

 

Here is a diagram of astrocystites.

 

599b7e91943b5_atrocystitesimage.jpg.6c0cddae8510550d5a33e42b4e80dbc7.jpg

 

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Interesting I have just spent about an hour looking for pictures of Astrocystites ottawaensis.   

 

It does not seem that there are a lot of good pictures out there. 

 

These ones are not anywhere near completely prepped and already they seem better than images I have been able to find online

 

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19 minutes ago, Malcolmt said:

It does not seem that there are a lot of good pictures out there...

 

figures of Astrocystites ottawaensis from:

 

Mintz, L.W. (1970)

The Edrioblastoidea: re-evaluation based on a new specimen of Astrocystites from the Middle Ordovician of Ontario.

Journal of Paleontology, 44(5):872-880

 

IMG1.jpg.ce92c9daca640b0ac5ca2ea8be800400.jpg  IMG2.thumb.jpg.08f900203827631c47ff947dc8edb1f5.jpg

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