Search the Community
Showing results for tags 'carboniferous/mississipian period'.
I got to visit North Alabama again to another location to hunt Carboniferous/Mississippian Period Marine Fossils in March 2022. Getting up early isn't fun at all, but when you are with your hunting buddies and get to hang with them and others it turns out to be a fun day of discovery. You couldn't ask for a gorgeous day considering most weekends it was raining, it was sunny, not a cloud in the sky. It was cold though and it didn't help that the wind was gusting at times to the point where I lost my footing a few times on flat ground! There were piles of rock in the area, some new... freshly dumped there, and others that had been dumped years ago. It was the older piles that got my attention. It was there the stone had time to weather from the main slabs where fossils loosened and fallen out from them! Crinoids, lots of em' as well as Blastoids, Brachiopods and really cool hash plates consisting of Archimedes/Fenestella in colors that I'm not accustomed to seeing! I rarely find whole or partial Crinoids other than the 3D stems and segments of ones when I'm out in the field. In this place I found more than all my hunting days combined, some full and other in pieces like the ones pictured above. The coolest finds of the day were the 3D Crinoid Flowerette called a Phanocrinus bellulus pictured above. The before and after picture of the 3D before gluing and a Calyx. The last picture was in a slab of rock that weighed more than a hundred pounds, so a picture had to do. Blastoids are one of my favorite hunted Mississippian Period fossils and probably popular among fossil hunters in general. Some are found in 3D form, others found in hash plates and some smashed beyond recognition... here are a few I found that day. Another favorite of the Carboniferous/Mississippian fossils are the hash plates. These two hash plates come from different areas of the state. One is a two color white to beige and the other is a two color gray to blue tint. I encountered two nesting sites with clutches of eggs from the Killdeer bird. Those eggs are well camouflaged so stepping on them would of been easy and had to watch my steps! I found it humorous that these birds made use of the material around them including fossils seen in picture #1! Then there were the tracks made by them in the mud. With the right environment and chemical processes, these tracks could become trace fossils in a million or so years, how funny is that! What a great hunt that day and ends March 2022 with some great finds! Being around people with like minds and just enjoying the fellowship, sunshine and gorgeous weather to boot. Hope to get back to this site soon!
January 2022 started off with a bang as my hunting buddies and I made our way to North to hunt Carboniferous fossils. It was an overcast chilly day but that didn't deter us. I came across this Trilobutt and just see the rear end (near my thumb) because my eyesight isn't what it used to be. When I get home and get a closer look I see what appears to be a part of the head. Not knowing much about Trilobites I posted it on a Facebook group page for some identification. It was pointed out that it is indeed part of the head and other pieces scattered about the hash plate if you look closely. The thing about ocean floors during that time period all that debris swishing around during heavy currents can dis articulate anything that is fragile including a Trilobite molt or quite possible a dead one? Such a cool specimen to add to my collection! I ran out of stones to split, so I started to look around the shoreline and had heard from others that Colonial Coral was near where I was situated. I see this huge stone with recognizable hexagonal shapes but it was too big to even try dig it up and carry out, so a picture will have to do. My goal is find several small pieces and eventually I get lucky and find two to take home. Below I find this piece, most of it covered in mud so it was hard to see detail or anything about it but knew it was a piece of Colonial Coral? When I got it home and washed all the grime off the stone I was astonished to see all those hexagonal patterns make up the Colonial Coral that was covered in mud. After the colonial coral there were no other fossils to find at this spot other than this living fossil, a Decopod crawling around on 300 million year old fossil stones. I've never seen one this colorful! We decided to go to another site and when we arrive there were a lot of rocks but found one but nothing else spectacular other than this Archimedes with Fenestella wrapped around the spine... giving an image of what the Archimedes really looked like together. Mostly Fenestella is found covering a hash plate with out the screw and the screws are usually found apart from the Fenestella by themselves or on a hash plate We made it to the last spot of the day, the sun made it's appearance and started warming up the air around us so we had to shed layers! I found myself amongst a patch of rocks and sat down and scanned the ground finding crinoid stems, Archimedes screws (not pictured), Horn Coral (pic#1), Brachiopod steinkerns (pic#2&4), and Blastoids. Blastoids (pic#2) are my favorite of the two and just love finding them and it's safe to say that most fossil collectors love finding them too! Last but not least I found a straight shelled Cephlopod, wishing I could add this one to my collection! The impression was on a huge slab and when I tried to extract it, it was already fragile and broke into four pieces. In cases like this, a picture will have to do for this nice specimen because nature will eventually reclaim it. What a great January day to hunt Carboniferous, one of my favorite time periods! It was a perfect day with all the finds and hanging with your buddies, look forward to getting back there soon!