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Bronzviking

Florida Agatized Sponge or Coral?

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digit

Showed the images above to a coral scientist friend of mine and her geologist husband who have many combined decades at looking at coral reefs (extant and in the fossil record). They were undecided between very worn coral colony and bryozoan colony but leaning toward bryozoan. It was nice to see the image from @Al Dente above as in my experience (mainly diving) I usually only encounter bryozoan colonies as 2D sheets of zooid chambers tiled together in a nice tessellated geometric pattern. I don't think I've ever seen such extensive bryozoan colonies with layer after layer built up into a thick sheet. I would have leaned toward exceedingly worn coral colony given what appear to be straight walls separating individual polyps and what appear to be growth bands.

 

If you want to have a higher certainty for an ID to keep this item out of the "unknown pile" you might try shooting an image to Roger Portell at the FLMNH and see if he has an opinion. He's likely seen more Florida invert fossils than most of us.

 

Cheers.

 

-Ken

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Bronzviking
19 hours ago, digit said:

Showed the images above to a coral scientist friend of mine and her geologist husband who have many combined decades at looking at coral reefs (extant and in the fossil record). They were undecided between very worn coral colony and bryozoan colony but leaning toward bryozoan. It was nice to see the image from @Al Dente above as in my experience (mainly diving) I usually only encounter bryozoan colonies as 2D sheets of zooid chambers tiled together in a nice tessellated geometric pattern. I don't think I've ever seen such extensive bryozoan colonies with layer after layer built up into a thick sheet. I would have leaned toward exceedingly worn coral colony given what appear to be straight walls separating individual polyps and what appear to be growth bands.

 

If you want to have a higher certainty for an ID to keep this item out of the "unknown pile" you might try shooting an image to Roger Portell at the FLMNH and see if he has an opinion. He's likely seen more Florida invert fossils than most of us.

 

Cheers.

 

-Ken

Thanks Ken for taking the time getting help from your friends and posting Roger, it's much appreciated. :)

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abyssunder

Maybe there could be a possibility of silicified bryozoan covering a scleractinian coral (like Septastrea). :headscratch:

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Plax

plus one for bryozoan colony

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