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This past Sunday, I had a chance to explore a few roadcuts near Dubuque Iowa.

i came across a very unusual fossil that had me stumped.

After reading through an old paper, I found a match to my fossil. The guide listed the name as Climaconus.

I was unfamiliar with what it might be so I did a Google search which did not yield any helpful results.

I am hoping that someone on the forum might be familiar with this animal and enlighten me as to what it is.

Is the name still valid?

The Rock is part of the Maquoketa Formation which is upper Ordovician.

It was found in the Brainard Shale member.

Any help will be appreciated.

 

 

5465AA54-8EB6-4490-B26A-0EA20509BF6C.jpeg

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A467FCFC-6DA4-483B-ADA2-2B7A85F146B0.jpeg

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Does the other side look the same?

 

Where's that identification app when you need it?! :unsure:

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8 minutes ago, caldigger said:

Does the other side look the same?

 

Where's that identification app when you need it?! :unsure:

Yes, it looks similar on both sides

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Climacoconus is the correct spelling.  It does not match the published examples of Climacoconus.

 

image.png.9aa27fa40d3bac7114cbb76c507101bd.png

Treatise on Invertebrate Paleontology: Part F Coelenterata

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The specimen somewhat resembles an anal sac of a crinoid.

 

Don

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Thanks Scott!

The Mystery deepens.

This is the image that I was basing the ID on.

58A3796E-A7BC-41F6-923A-A546410313BF.jpeg

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Thanks to Scott putting me on the right track, I think I have figured out what this is.

I came across a paper on unusual Conularids from the Midwest.

There is a specimen figured labeled as Glyptoconularia gracilis.

Need to see if I can track down the original   description.

The paper states that it is extremely rare.

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This one also has different features.

 

Van Iten, H. 1994. Redescription of Glyptoconularia gracilis (Hall), an Ordovician conulariid from North America. pp. 363-366.

In: Landing, E. (ed.), Studies in Stratigraphy and Paleontology in Honor of Donald W. Fisher. New York State Museum and Geological Survey Bulletin, 481:1-380  PDF LINK

image.thumb.png.b87ac30b8c0759e3cbe2ac6b011cb36b.png

 

image.thumb.png.9fd82112a8513beec90f0abea0ea010c.png

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WOW WOW WOW!!! That's the kind of thins I wait for. A complete What on Earth! Outstanding find. Thanks for the education!!

 

But I'm still having a hell of a time seeing a conulariid in there. Reminds me more of a starfish arm!

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minnbuckeye

Is it really a conulariid? The diameter of the top and bottom of the long large piece is identical, different from my uneducated opinion that  conularias seem to taper gradually throughout their length???. After looking at google images of species quoted, they all show obvious tapering. Also noticed the smaller piece has 6 "rows" while the larger only 4. Hope someone can ID for sure.

 

Mike

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I found a reference to Climaconus in Geological Society of Iowa Guidebook 63 "Geology in the Dubuque Area" 1997  http://publications.iowa.gov/25714/1/GSI-063.pdf

See "Stop 5" beginning on p. 25.  Page 30 has "Table 1" which is a list of the fauna for that stop.  Listed under Cnidaria - Class uncertain (Conularids) is Climaconus pumilus.

Page 31, Figure 4 has a sketch of the genus in the top left corner of the figure.  It looks very much like what you have found.

 

A quick scanning of the text describing the stop did not result in any mention of the specimen jumping out of the page at me, but it was a quick scan.  The "References" section at the end of Stop 5 (pp. 35ff) did show some interesting references regarding conularids which might prove useful to track down (esp. Glenister, 1957; also Van Iten et al, 1996 as well as some of Brown's contributions on the formation).

 

I must say that what you have sure doesn't have the pyramidal shape of a conularid.

 

Keep us posted on what you find out.

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Thanks for all of the great input.

This is definitely a head scratcher.

I agree that the description of Glyptoconularia that Scott posted does not match my specimen.

I was basing the Glyptoconularia ID based on a paper that I came across.

The paper is titled Problematical Fossil Cnidarians From The Upper Ordovician Of North Central America by Heyo Van Iten, Julie Ann Fitzke and Robt S Cox 1996.

There is a similar looking specimen on Plate 1 figure 5 that is labeled Conularia Gracilis. I believe the site indicated in the paper is either the same location where I found my specimen or another nearby site.

I am attaching a pictures of the specimen in the paper.

I agree that this does not look anything like any conularia that I have seen.

Hopefully someone who has collected the area will see this post.

7BAB2225-1A5C-4F5E-A514-BA1E54039981.jpeg

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minnbuckeye
19 minutes ago, FossilDAWG said:

How about this?  Plicodendrocrinus casei anal sac.

@FossilDAWGNow we are on to something!!! The crinoid posted in another thread looked like dendrocrinus to me. Another FF post had a similar sample in question: 

  • Maquoketa Echinoderm Bit
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squalicorax

Maquoketa Echinoderm Bit

By squalicorax, June 18, 2012 in Fossil ID

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On 7/30/2019 at 5:03 PM, FossilDAWG said:

How about this?  Plicodendrocrinus casei anal sac.

image from http://drydredgers.org/crinoids_cladida.htm

scale bar = 10 mm

Don

 plicodendrocrinus_casei_o3_enh_10mm_scal

 

Brower, J.C. 1995

Dendrocrinid Crinoids from the Ordovician of Northern Iowa and Southern Minnesota.

Journal of Paleontology, 69(5):939-960

 

Plicodendrocrinus casei (Meek, 1871) Description of Iowa specimens:

 

"Anal sac partly known, with straight sides that may expand slightly in distal direction; one side of sac consists of three full columns of plates and half of two columns along its margins. Anal sac plates strongly plicate, with narrow, sharp stellate ridges; plications of proximal plates definitely involve folding of plate margins; pores not present along plate margins between stellate ridges. Most anal sac plates hexagonal; width: height as follows: proximal plates 1.54-1.75, medial plates about five rows above anal X 1.92, distal plates 2.93 to 3.40. Anal opening and tegmen not seen."

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Rob,

 

By any chance did this fossil come from the same outcrop where you found the nice dendrocrinid calyx you posted in another thread?  Wouldn't it be amazing if these fossils fit together?  You can see a bit of the base of the anal sac on that calyx, and the pattern seems to match.

 

Don

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On 7/30/2019 at 5:11 PM, FossilDAWG said:

Rob,

 

By any chance did this fossil come from the same outcrop where you found the nice dendrocrinid calyx you posted in another thread?  Wouldn't it be amazing if these fossils fit together?  You can see a bit of the base of the anal sac on that calyx, and the pattern seems to match.

 

Don

Yes,  the fossil in question came from the same site. This appears to be an excellent match!

Thanks to everyone for some great detective work.

My initial thought when I found the Fossil was that it was a Crinoid anal tube.

The climaconus image is what confused me.

It definitely makes more sense then a conularia.

 

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On 7/30/2019 at 5:11 PM, FossilDAWG said:

Rob,

 

By any chance did this fossil come from the same outcrop where you found the nice dendrocrinid calyx you posted in another thread?  Wouldn't it be amazing if these fossils fit together?  You can see a bit of the base of the anal sac on that calyx, and the pattern seems to match.

 

Don

Thanks again Don,

I took a better look at the calyx this morning and observed the same structure that is preserved on the anal tube.

I matched the structure on the calyx up to the tube and it is a perfect fit!

i also have a few sections of stem that seem to attach.

I need to glue it all together but it looks pretty amazing.

34CABF99-E0A5-41FC-A784-41738C1C4D09.jpeg

2FE940D6-76FC-46A7-A86B-BA4824EAD38E.jpeg

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Fossildude19

Awesome find, Rob! @RCFossils

And excellent ID, Don!  @FossilDAWG

 

These kinds of topics (Those that present a mystery that eventually gets figured out) are my favorites on the Forum. :D 

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Excellent observation, Don!

 

Congratulations, Rob!

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crabfossilsteve

Wow, now that is a cool connection of specimens that were found at different times.  Congratulations and a very cool crinoid.

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That's even more amazing than I would have dared to hope.

 

Don

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I am very happy for you; such a great find!!  And great recognition, Don.  This one was a lot of fun!!

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