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Found 16 results

  1. Hello to everybody! I'm kinda new here, but before I start I must say I really love this forum! It has really great vibes and you instantly can tell that this is a good and friendly community! So, I am ziggycardon, I live in Belgium, close to the border of the Netherlands and when we start speaking geologically, I live on the same cretaceous sediments as where the first major Mosasaurus discoveries where done! Unfortunatly I have never been on a fossil hunt myself and everything currently in my collection was bought or given to me. But I hope to change that soon, as I am dying to go hunting myself. Maybe the Chalk sediments 3 km from my home would be a good place to start! For the rest, my job, my major hobby and my other main interest besides fossils are living animals. I currently work as the head of terrarium & aquarium in 3 different pet stores and I have quite a collection of reptiles, amphibians, invertebrates and tropic fish myself. In my spare time I often take my own living animals along with my fossils and other educational natural history material to schools so I can teach kids about nature and it's history and hidden mechanics. For the rest are my other hobbies mainly based around movies and televisions as I collect a lot of stuff drom my favorite franchises like "Lord or the Rings" & "The Hobbit", "Game of Thrones, "Pirates of the Caribbean", ... And I also attent a lot of comic cons and other events related to those franchises. But then this topic! In this topic I will show my collection of fossils (and also minerals, stones and meteorites) as it is right now and then I will highlight each group of fossils bit by bit. I am currently starting with a own specialized fossil room, so ofcourse the progress and end result will also be posted here! And ofcourse when something get's added to my collection, I'll show it here as well. Sometimes a photo of my "special" pets or taxidermy specimens might pop up, but this topic will mainly be about the fossil room and my fossil collection. For the rest, if you have any comments or questions about the collection or about me or about anything, feel free to ask! I'd love to reply!
  2. Hi everyone, From now on I will post my hunting trip reports to Eben Emael as I often forget to make separate posts for them. I visit the Romontbos Quarry in Eben Emael multiple times a year with our fossil club, the BVP (Belgische vereniging voor Paleontologie). It's one of the last active locations that's still accessible in the Maastrichtian Type Location that allows hunting, and the quarry is only a 20 minute drive away for me, so that's ideal. DISCLAIMER: For all new fossil hunters: This location is off-limits for individual people! You cannot go hunt there on your own. The quarry is very strict and does not allow trespassing. This is an amazing location with great fossil finds, so I cannot stress it enough to not enter this place illegal as it could put a stop to fossil hunting for everyone here. If you want to go on a fossil hunt here, join the BVP! They are the only ones with permission to access the quarry, and they organize multiple excursions to the quarry each year under strict safety protocols. If we behave, and no one blows it by trespassing, we should be able to have access to this quarry until the year 2043. Now that's out of the way, let me introduce this amazing location which is my favorite place to hunt! The Romontbos quarry in Eben Emael is part of "Mount Saint Peter" which lies on the Dutch/Belgian border and is home to the so called Limburg/Liege chalk also know locally as "Limburgse mergel" which was often used as building blocks in the past which is why you can see serpulids, oysters and urchins in the stones of old buildings in the region. The quarry is located only a couple of km from the city of Maastricht and "Mount Saint Peter" is the location where one of the first biggest fossil discoveries has been made, a skull of Mosasaurus hoffmanni A.K.A "The Beast of Maastricht" back in around 1766. The layers of Eben-Emael are part of the Maastrichtian type locality dating back to around 70 - 66 million years ago, during that time this area of Belgium and the Netherlands was part of a shallow tropical sea. The layers in the quarry have a very rich fauna and floral list: You can find many bivalves (Acutostrean Agerostrea, Pinna, Neithea, ...), Gastropods, Brachiopods, Serpulids, Belemnites, Crustacean claws (Mesostylus faujasi), sea urchins (Hemipneustes striatoradiatus, ...) and shark teeth (Squalicorax, Pseudocorax, Palaeohypotodus, ...). For the microfossil lovers there is also oportunities to collect Bryozoans and Forarminifera There is also fish material like fish teeth and the odd scale or vertebra to be found, or if you are very lucky you can find fossils of one of the many species of Mosasaur and Sea Turtles that swam in this shallow sea. But also plant material can be found like Sea Grass (Thalassocharis) of which this quarry is one of the only places in the world where you can find sea grass. But also Conifer material has been found regulary at past excursions. Also known from this location and other localities in the Maastrichtian type locality but exceedingly rare are ammonites, crab carapaces, sawfish material, Elasmosaur material, dinosaur material (Betasuchus and Hadrosaurs), marine crocodile material and bird fossils. It is in this same quarry that "the wonder chicken" Asteriornis maastrichtensis and Janavis finalidens were found. Should you see me on one of the excursions, feel free to say hi and come for a talk! Also feel free to share your own fossils from your trips to Eben-Emael, the more the merrier!
  3. Yesterday I was in South Limburg, the Netherlands, for an appointment. And after a journey of almost 3 hours, my appointment was canceled due to a sudden toothache. Well nothing can be done about it, all understandable, and with the sun-drenched afternoon ahead I wanted to make the best of it. Armed with only a pair of boots, a pocket knife and Google maps, I went looking for possible fossil hotspots. I'm glad I always have something in the car, for such "emergencies". Of course with respect for nature and the beautiful limestone walls that South Limburg has to offer, I went looking around Maastricht and the Belgium border area! There are still plenty of opportunities to find fossils, especially around abandoned cave entrances. Many rocks are crumbling and around small cave entrances there are sometimes beautiful pieces of limestone and flint that have fallen from the rocks due to erosion. I decided to drive around looking for such places. In any case, it provided beautiful views of the landscape. Around Maastricht I found some deserted limestone walls where I tried my luck. Sometimes quite exciting, although I do not enter the caves (safety comes first!), there is sometimes a somewhat strange atmosphere. People have clearly slept in the area where I was looking, in one of the caves there was an abandoned mattress and there are some empty looks of someone who had clearly made it his home. Walking a bit further along the road I found large and small pieces of limestone which probably came down in the past period together with pieces of flint. Quickly collected some pieces to further investigate (at a distance from the wall) for fossils. I found several nice pieces within an hour. Especially a lot of small Belemnitella, mostly broken, but some still presentable. Pair of very small Bivalves and to top it off a small shark tooth. I had to take a closer look, but a spot search in the database of Paleontica gave me the name Centrophoroides appendiculatus. Here are some pictures that give an impression of my finds. Not yet well prepared, fresh from the often damp limestone. This is how the day became successful and I am once again richer in shark species from the Limburg Cretaceous. It was very nice to see many shells and flint in limestone walls again, as if caught in time. I brought another bucket with some loose pieces to further explore at home, so who knows what I will find .
  4. Link: https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/netherlands-journal-of-geosciences/article/first-report-of-chelonioidea-cf-ctenochelys-from-the-late-cretaceous-of-the-maastrichtian-type-area/2F9C83B052182B5DB2AF792F2AC2F934
  5. Came accross this news shared by the NHM Maastricht, another fossil bird has been discribed from the same quarry and layer in which the famous wonderchicken "Asteriornis" was found. This being the Romontbos quarry in Eben-Emael in Belgium (near de border with Maastricht in the Netherlands) which dates to the Late Maastrichtian era (66,7 mya) Here are some links to the news articles (both in english as in dutch) as well as as video. https://www.theguardian.com/science/2022/nov/30/ct-scans-toothed-bird-fossil-jaw-mobile-palate-avian-evolution https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-cambridgeshire-63809867 https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-022-04181-7 https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-022-03692-7 https://www.science.org/content/article/new-look-ancient-jaw-fossil-rewrites-bird-evolution Dutch article: https://www.1limburg.nl/nieuws/1890918/fossiel-van-vogel-met-tanden-ontdekt-in-sint-pietersberg
  6. Dasha

    Coral or sponge?

    Hi guys! I was in the Warsaw Geological Museum and there I came across this specimen which reminded me of Tabulate coral, but it was signed as a "sponge"... The sponge from the "maastrichtian age", when Tabulata already was extinct. I couldn't be more confused. This one still looks like coral to me. What do you think?
  7. Hello everyone, Yesterday my girlfriend & I went fossil hunting for birthday. This was the first fossil hunt the two of us did on our self, our previous hunts were all excursions with the Belgian Association for Paleontology. We visited two locations, but locations are part of the Formation of Gulpen, around 68 million years old, dating back to the Maastrichtian (these outcrops are part of the Maastrichtian type location where the first mayor Mosasaurus discovery was done). The first location we visited was a limestone outcrop next to the Albert Channel here in Belgium, only a 20 minute drive away. I discovered this outcrop while looking out the window whenever I drive to Maastricht and yesterday we decided to check it out. It is quite a little outcrop, no more than 70 meters wide, but one of the few places left where you can hunt in Limburg. We hunted here for around one and a half hour and we only searched the fallen and loose bits of limestone that were the results of erosion. We didn't want to start hacking in the rock. We mainly found ancient sea shells of different species and some bryozoa's in this location. And a some pieces of wall where teeming with urchin fragments, but we didn't find any intact one near the surface. But since the urchin graveyard was deeply enbedded in the rock and we didn't want to hack in it, we left it as it was The second location we visited was the "Grote Bos" in Beutenaken in The Netherlands. Here there are holloways in the forest that expose some limestone outcrops. This spot is known for it's belemnite which can be found on the forest paths, because the soft limestone gets eroded but hard belemnites remain, making them very easy to find. We found around 25 belemnites during our 1 hour hunt there as well as a shell imprint and a mystery fossil. Like the previous location, the patch of limestone where these belemnite can be found is also only around 70 meter long, but luckily very rich.
  8. Last weekend Natalie and I went on a city trip to Maastricht in the Netherlands. After a 2h drive and a tour in the city we went to visit the "Natural History Museum of Maastricht" The museum in itself is relatively small , but there are plenty of Maastrichtian fossils on display. Of course the famous mossasaurs and turtle fossils, but also lots of display cases with invertebrates of all kind from the Maastrichtian marls in the area. There are also a lot of volunteers working there to work on recent discoveries and to talk to the visitors about those prepparations .
  9. Hi, a few days ago I went on my first ever fossil hunting trip to Eben-Emael, a Limestone quarry in Belgium that dates to the Maastrichtian and is part from the type location (the historical ENCI quarry being only a 3,5 km to the north. The trip was orginized by the BVP (Belgische Vereniging voor Paleontologie) and a short report of the trip with phot's and some of the finds can be found in this topic by @Manticocerasman who I was lucky enough to tag along with, cause I doubt I would have found many mention worthy fossils without the guidance of Kevin. But since I am into microfossils I decided to collect some samples of the limestone without the obvious fossils home to later be able to look for microfossils as it should be quite rich. I think I have around 1 - 3 kg of matrix left to look for microfossils. But I have never myself dissolved matrix, and although it seems easy, I don't want to make any mistakes. During the trip they advised me on two different approaches, depending on what kind of fossils I wanted to find. One approach was dissolving in water and the other in vinegar, but now the seeming obvious question. How exactly do I do that? Should I just take a bucket of a glass, fill it halfway with said liquids and just wait? Or should I use a sieve and lay the block there so only fossils remain in the sieve and the rest goes to the buttom. Does the limestone just dissolve or does some kind of putty residu where the microfossils will be in? If so, how to properly remove the fossils when you pour out the liquids without pouring out the fossils? I know I have many questions and some might be very obvious and straigh-forward, but I really haven't done this before and I would like to do it the right way from start. So thanks in advance for any tips & tricks, I would really appreciate any help!
  10. Hi everyone! After the recommendations of @Manticocerasman, @gigantoraptor & @Joeri_R I joined the BVP (Belgian Association for Paleontology). Today I got my confirmation mail of the membership. I have long been wanting to go out on fossil hunts especially in my own region which consist of cretaceous limestone from the Maastrichtian. Luckily for me the next fossil excursion planned by the BVP is a trip to the Romontbos quarry in Eben-Emael which is only a 20 - 25 minute drive for me. So I did sign up for said excursion but since it's my first ever fossil hunt I want to go prepared and I was wondering if any of you have any tips on what tools and stuff to take with me to the quarry and what tools are best for excavating said limestone. I already know that a safety helmet, safety gloves and a fluorescent jacket are required and that safety glasses and steeltipped working shoes are recommended. I was also planning on taking enough water to stay hydrated, a backpack and a good strong bag to transport excavated fossils and perhaps some matrix to examine later. And I was planning on purchasing this kit from my regular fossil shop. Are there any other tools or items that I should bring? Or does anyone have some tips for an inexperienced beginner? Or is anyone is familiar with the location feel free to share. Thank you in advance and I look forward to my first hunt!
  11. Hi! I made a small visit to the Natural History Museum in Maastricht today to visit the new small exhibition named "Whale: Locality Maastricht" which centers around some Eocene whale bones from an undescribed whale found in the ENCI quarry in Maastricht. The exhibition explores further into the evolution of whales, it's a small exhibition but worth a visit if you haven't seen the museum or if you are really interested in whale evolution. Should any of our Dutch, Belgian & German members decide to visit (or international members who are in the area), then you should really grab a copy of the exhibition book. It is really cool and informative, it's only €2,50 but 125 pages long (both in dutch & english) and it covers the evolution of whales, the ENCI whale, modern whales & their biology and about whaling and whales in human history & myth. The exhibition book alone is well worth the visit in my opinion, I kinda compare it with the EOS magazine about Iguanodons & the book "Mammoths: ice age giants by Adrian Lister" but then about whales. So here are the photo's I made of the exhibition. The Exhibition Room: left: Metepocetus sp. neurocranium with preserved ear bones from Liessel in the Netherlands (Miocene) Right: Isoluted vertebrae of various whale species from Liessel in the Netherlands (Miocene) Isolated vertebrae of Eocene primordial whales (Archaeoceti) dredged from the buttom of the North Sea, for comparison with those of the "ENCI whale" Isolated vertebrae of Eocene primordial whales (Archaeoceti) dredged from the buttom of the North Sea, for comparison with those of the "ENCI whale" Smallest jaw: possibly Dorudon sp. from the late Eocene of Ad Dakhla in Morocco. Bigger jaw: possibly Pappocetus lugardi, from the middle Eocene of Ben Gueran in Morocco.
  12. From the album: Pisces

    Cusp 23mm. Upper. From the phosphate plateau at Kouribga, Morocco Maastrichtian, Late Cretaceous.
  13. Yesterday I made a visit to the Natural History Museum of Maastricht (The Netherlands) for my Birthday The museum is only a 40 minute drive from where I live and it showcases the entire natural history of the region, the cool thing about this museum is that the fossils which are showcased here are all regional fossils from The Netherlands, Germany & Belgium. I am starting the topic off with 2 pictures of the special exhibit called Microsculptures, which shows giant detailed photographs of insects to show how magnifecent they are. Then I went on to the "Mosaleum" which holds "Bér" the holotype specimen of Prognathodon saturator
  14. Hello dear members of the Fossil Forum, as I am new to this forum, I want to introduce myself, giving you a few infos about myself and my interests: Like innumerous others I started collecting fossils during my childhood days, stopped for more than 15 years and picked things up again ten years ago. I then started visiting the Chalk quarries around Maastricht (which is only 25 kilometres away) and was immediately fascinated by the well preserved bryozoan fauna in these Upper Maastrichtian layers. I sticked to studying and collecting these animal group from that time on and until today this fascination has not lost its power. Since two years I am working – together with a fellow amateur bryozoologist – on an extensive publication about the bryozoa of Maastricht. The following images (all from Maastricht) might give you a good insight into the wonderfull world of these small fossils. Enjoy! Best wishes, Oliver
  15. Hi everyone, With this thread I wanted to start a discussion about what the feeding habits would be for most mosasaur species, how you think they would have fed. I personally love mosasaurs, they are one of my favorite prehistoric animals for a number of reasons and I’ve recently even bought my first Prognathodon jaw and I also live in an area that is not only known for their fossils but also for the discovery of mosasaurs. I’ve been doing a bit of reading lately about mosasaurs but I can’t really find anything difinitive on their feeding habits. Their diet yes. But exactly how they consumed their prey, not yet. I personally work with reptiles on a daily base, both with my job and with my hobby and I know quite a bit of different feeding behaviours with these animals. And as I was feeding the ball pythons (Python regius) at work I was kinda wondering, how would a large marine reptile like a mosasaurus eat? Would they just tear off chunks of meat like their closest living relatives the monitor lizards? Or would they perform deathroll like crocodiles do to tear of chunks of meat of their prey? Or when we talk about smaller prey, would they just swallow them whole like a snake does with it’s two lower jaws that can move independently, would a mosasaur be capable of that? Or would it be a mix of all those things or something entirely different? So I was just wondering what are your thoughts on the subject? I love to hear your theories and own finds and observations or if anyone ever read something in a scientific paper about the matter. I am dying to know your thoughts on the matter, as I want to learn as much as I can about these magnificent beasts!
  16. Last week i was at the natural history museum in maastricht,netherlands,there was a fantastic mosasaurus' skeleton that impressed me
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