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  1. I am fortunate enough to have such a huge amount of Middle Devonian Givetian material that I thought it best to put the older Middle Devonian stage, the Eifelian, in its own thread. There are some spectacular fossils here as well though! I thought a good place to start would be in the Formosa Reef, which I believe is quite early Eifelian. This tabulate coral and stromatoporoid reef continues similar complexes found from the Middle Silurian, see my: https://www.thefossilforum.com/topic/84678-adams-silurian/page/3/ thread from page three onwards for details. All these Formosa Reef specimens come from a delightful gift from my good friend @Monica who is a tad busy with life at the moment but is fine and still thinking of the forum. This outcrop can be found on Route 12 near Formosa/Amherstburg, Bruce County, Ontario, Canada. This beautiful-looking specimen came to me with only a third of it revealed but I managed to get it this far after nine days of painful pin prepping. Monica found another one and posted it for ID here: https://www.thefossilforum.com/topic/105528-weird-circular-imprints-formosa-reef-lower-devonian/#comment-1172285 The specimen was identified by another Canny Canadian @Kane to be the little stromatoporoid sponge Syringostroma cylindricum. Hardly a reef-builder, but gorgeous nonetheless. It does have a little thickness to it, but not much. Beautiful! Pretty thin, actually. I love this Monica, thank you!
  2. Hello, at Tuesday, 10/01/2019, I made my first visit to the area around St. Josef, Western Styria, Austria ("Florianer Schichten", Langhian-Miocene) since about 11 months. I checked out 6 sites in 5 hours, three of them were made public by me 2-3 years ago: Fuggaberg-3-a Fuggaberg-3-b (This one was also published in a local journal 2 years ago.) Hoellerkogel-4 Bramberg-1 All sites had easy surface pickings of small fossils from debris. Outcropping sediment with fossils is exposed in 5 of them, in one you have to dig a little bit (Fuggaberg-3), but its still easy going. I guess I have collected and seen about 40 mollusc species within these 5 hours. So, the situation around St. Josef is still very good (if you like miocene molluscs and small fossils, though ). I am starting with: Fuggaberg-3 Two fossil-rich outcrops are located in a very small creek, about 15 m apart (W and E, 1st row, left). At E, only the fossil-poor overlying sediments are exposed at the moment (1st row, right, the red object is about 12x6 cm large), but digging in the debris below (2nd row, right) yielded some fossil-rich matrix specimens. You can see the yield of this 10-minute dig in the pic of the 3rd row, right. Of special interest are the two small fossils lying on oyster shells (coral and muricid). The debris 1-3 meters below the outcrop contains many loose fossils, eg. Granulolabium bicinctum (2nd row, left) or Terebralia bidendata (3rd row, left). Nearly the same situation at W, only overlying sediment is exposed (4th row, left). In the debris below, below the red object, many small fossils are lying around (4rd row, right). You can see Granulolabium bicinctum, Terebralia bidendata, Turritella partschi, Sphaeronassa shoenni, Acanthocardia paucicostata and a bi-valve Anadara diluvii; only the last one is not lying at its original position but was put there for photo purposes . Continued...
  3. Too lazy to translate it myself, I just put the finished pdf through the google translator : Fossilien_2023_21052023_E.pdf Some, but not all, formating is lost, though. And its just one page of text besides three pages of pics. No worries about the detailed site map, as we already know, nobody cares about rudists . Here is the link to the original, German version, for our German speaking members : Fossilien_2023_21052023 (pdf, 3.4 MB, personal homepage) Here are the original pics: Have fun ! Franz Bernhard
  4. Another completely unknown to me from the Campanian St. Bartholomä-formation, Gosau-group, Eastern Alps: They were found in a polished slab of one of the typical fossiliferous limestone clasts of the Rudist-bearing "Knödelbrekzie" of this formation. There are many of these unknowns in this specimen, but not so well preserved as (A); they are mostly only fragments and also often strongly recrystallized (below C). The two elongated, greenish, inhomogeneous blobs in the right part of the specimen seem to be the same, containing crushed and poorly preserved fragments similar to (A). It could be, that there is some branching involved. Maybe this is also the case with the two green, interconnected, circular blobs to the right of the elongated blobs. One of these circular blobs contains remnants of the fossil in question. One of the unknwons has some corallite-like structures (C), but I don´t think, its a coral. However, there seem to be also some real corals in this specimen (D). I am totally at a loss, what A, B, C etc. could be. Possibilities see title, but it could be even something different. Every hint is appreciated, it´s ok if you only know the phylum . Remark: All of the phyla listed in the title are know (mentioned, not described) from similar clasts of the Campanian Wietersdorf Gosau-sediments in Carinthia. Many thanks! Franz Bernhard
  5. FranzBernhard


    From the album: Hippurites colliciatus Woodward, 1855 from St. Bartholomä, Styria, Austria

    East of Kalchberg, point 25, collected 08/12/2018. Incomplete specimen, shell heavily bored by clionid sponges.
  6. Hello, what do you thing about this fragmentary specimen? Its from the Upper Cretaceous Afling-Formation of the Gosau-Group of Kainach, Eastern Alps. It was found in an about 1 m thick conglomerate bed with Trochactaeon and hippuritid rudists. It consists of about 1 1/4 whorls, the whorls do not touch, hence "scalariform"(?). The upper "end" of the "tube" has an outer diameter of about 9.5 mm, the lower "end" an outer diameter of about 12 mm. The outer surface appears the be smooth, the shell is about 1 mm thick. Sorry, these are the best pics possible. Here is a link to a pic showing a part of the outcrop in October 2021: Outcrop Reinprechtskogel-63 Many thanks! Franz Bernhard
  7. I would like to share a typical "day off & out" during summer. During summer, I don´t do serious prospecting. Too hot, too green, too much distraction, like blueberries and mushrooms. So, last Sunday (07/03/2022), I mainly explored an area for "fruits" and visited two fossil sites discovered in October 2021. It was hiking-only, no driving between the various "stops". I found lots of blueberries (not fully ripe yet at 900 m asl), but it was much too dry for mushrooms. Nevertheless, I found a few places with a few Cantharellus cibarius: Some of them were even growing on extremely dry tractor paths. In the same general area, I have found two big Boletus edulis in May 31st by pure chance on a tractor path, which was very early in the year, hence my detailed prospecting for mushrooms in this area . Anyways, the goal were the sites 63 and 64, two about 10 years old forest road outcrops north of Reinprechtskogel (977 m asl) in the "Mixed Zone" of the lower Afling-formation in the Santonian-Campanian Gosau-group of Kainach of the Eastern Alps, squares are 2x2 km: Some landscape between the mushrooms and the fossils. That hill in the foreground a little bit right off the center in the first pic is Römaskogel hill (1006 m), the highest hill of the Kainach Gosau, with the rudist zones on its southwestern to northern slopes: Despite being quite densely* populated by dairy farmers, I find the area incredibly lovely and appealing**. Highest mountain in the very background to the right is about 2000 m high. Pics taken at about 900 m asl. *About 200 years ago, there was much less forest and much more (dairy) farm land in this area! **Ten years ago, I didn´t know the area yet and found it most boring geologically, judging from the literature... Site 63 exposes an about 1 m thick conglomerate bed with sparsely distributed Trochactaeon, rudists and some other molluscs, about 3 fossils per square meter are visible. The following pictured fossils were uncovered at 05/31/2022 and are somewhat clean now, scale is 1x1 m: Detail A, two weathered Trochactaeon: Detail B, a Vaccinites, a part of it still sticking in the outcrop: Here are some pics from October 2021, site 63 as found: I worked in slightly loosened parts of the exposure with a screwdriver and found some very "ugly" fossils. The following four pics all show the same specimen. The Trochactaeon is slightly flattened parallel to the bedding plane, the red object is about 11 cm high. Nearly in-situ, note the two already pictured snails at the upper right: Nearly in situ: Recovered and still in the field: Cleaned and at home: Other fossil found, upper valve of a Plagioptychus rudist: And a new one for the site, I don´t know what it is. I am fascinated by these ugly fossils in this coarse-grained conglomerate. Very probably a mix-up of various habitats, transported and deposited in a quite coarse-grained sediment. I would like to share also a polished section from this site again, specimens become a little bit better that way : I dug also a little bit at site 64, just a few tens of meters away from 63, and found again some rudists. Here, they are in a layer of sandstone, and no Trochactaeon have been observed yet. There are no outcrops between sites 63 and 64. The fossil beds could be in continuity, but it could also be a small fault in the small creek between the two sites. The fossil layer is at the red item: I took one specimen, its also not really a beauty . Freshly exposed and still in-situ: Cleaned at home: My recently bought pressure washer made cleaning of all these very dirty specimens easy. Not good, now I might take also big, very dirty specimens... Thanks for reading and looking! Franz Bernhard
  8. Fossil snails of the genus Trochactaeon from Kainach near Voitsberg, Styria, Austria (Gosau-Group of Kainach, upper Cretaceous) - Summary of this years prospection Introduction Snails of the extinct genus Trochactaeon (formerly part of the genus Actaeonella) are among the most familiar fossils of the upper Cretaceous Gosau-Group of the Austrian Alps. The rather large size of some species (>10 cm), their intriguing spiral pattern in transverse sections and plenty supply, based on many mass occurrence, make them particularly popular. Some well known occurrences in Austria, distributed over several 100 km, are Brandenberg in Tyrol, “Schneckenwand”/Rußbach in Salzburg, Waaggraben near Hieflau in Styria and “Schneckengartl”/Dreistetten in Lower Austria; all of these are located within the Northern Calcareous Alps, mainly composed of Mesozoic rocks, especially Triassic platform carbonates. The most extensive occurrence of Gosau-Group sediments in Austria, the Kainach Gosau, however, is resting on sediments of the Palaeozoic of Graz. The Gosau-Group of Kainach consists mainly of coarse- to fine-grained clastic sediments (conglomerates to siltstones, Geistthal-formation, Afling-formation), some bituminous marls (St. Pankrazen-formation) and some hydraulic marls (St. Bartholomä-formation). The age of the whole group is considered to be mostly Campanian, but stretches into the Santonian and possibly into the Maastrichtian (Ebner & Rantitsch, 2000). In contrast to many other Gosau-Group occurrences, the Kainach Gosau is considered to be rather poor in fossils. Noticeable fossil occurrences are rudists of the St. Bartholomä-formation, some plant fossils and accumulations of small gastropods within the St. Pankrazen-formation and a few scattered ammonite concentrations within the Afling-formation. All of these fossils are already known since the 1850ies. This is also the case for the Trochactaeon snails. Transverse section of Trochactaeon giganteus from the Kainach Gosau. Generalized geological map of Styria with Trochactaeon occurrences in the northern part of the Kainach Gosau. Location of the Waaggraben site is also indicated. Brief history of Trochactaeon in the Kainach Gosau Trochactaeon snails were first mentioned in a footnote by Morlot (1850), thereby proofing the Cretaceous age of these sediments. Only two years later, their existence was already doubted (Peters, 1852). However, in 1871, Stur was able to prove the occurrence of Trochactaeon in the Kainach Gosau with museum specimens already submitted by Morlot (Locality “Am Sengsenwerk `in der Eben´, Kainach, Nord”). Indicative was the host rock of the snails, which is different to the host rocks of Trochactaeon snails within the Gosau sediments of the Northern Calcareous Alps. It took about 100 years, before several occurrences of this snail within actual outcrops were discovered by systematic investigations of a local teacher and collector in the 1960ies. But the in-situ occurrences where never described, only briefly mentioned in mapping reports and summaries of the regional geology (Gräf, 1975). The only exception is a large outcrop at the main road in Gallmannsegg north of Kainach, where some of these snails are very firmly embedded in a very hard, conglomeratic sandstone and can therefore be observed “permanently”. This site is featured in a recent excursion guide (Hubmann & Gross, 2015) and very interestingly, this is also the discovery locality of Morlot (1850), though highly modified during later road construction. Discovery site of Morlot (1850), highly modified during road construction (red X). Römaskogel Mt. (1006 m) to the upper right. Field work and results Already since several years on my wish list, it took two events in March 2020 which allowed me to prospect efficiently for this snails: First was a hint from Hans Eck (Voitsberg), who pointed out some occurrences to me, some very detailed hints, some quite general. Their distribution enabled me to restrict the prospecting area to a rather small stretch of land in the northwestern part of the Kainach Gosau, namely from Gschmurgraben/Anesbach to the east to Eckwirt to the west. The second incident was the C-thing, which allowed me to make for several day trips in this area, walking along forest roads and other paths some whole days long... Excerpts of the geological maps 1:50.000 Köflach (left) and Voits-berg (right) with the investigated area. All Trochactaeon occurrences are located within the red rectangle. Anesbach to the upper right, Eckwirt to the lower left, size of squares is 2x2 km. This prospection resulted in more than 10 “new” occurrences of Trochactaeon snails. They range from a few snails stuck within the driveways of forest roads to up to a 0.5 m thick bed tightly packed with snails. They are situated in the uppermost Geistthal-formation or the lowermost Afling formation; the literature gives ambiguous attribution of the snail-bearing zone. The especially good exposures along a forest road in the area of Breitenbach allowed the recognition of at least 6 Trochactaeon-bearing beds within a sediment thickness of about 20 m. About 100-200 higher in the sedimentary column, another Trochactaeon bed occurs. The host rock of the snails is a rather hard, dark grey to dark brown, mostly slightly conglomeratic sandstone, firmly enclosing the snails. Adjoining rocks of the snail beds are grey to greenish grey siltstones and sandstones, sometimes containing plant debris. Coarse-grained conglomerates are also abundant. Bedding planes dip generally with 20°-60° toward southeast to south. Rather surprising was the discovery of nearly black, up to 1 m thick limestone lenses with abundant fragments of radiolitid rudists near the snail beds in several spots. Continued...
  9. FranzBernhard

    Mandible with teeth

    Hello, I have a specimen of a mandible with teeth for your scrutinization. It was found some years ago in the Campanian St. Bartholomä-Formation of the Gosau-Group of Kainach, Eastern Alps, in Styria, Austria. I am little bit concerned about the bone texture and also the arrangement of the teeth. It seems it could be in urgent need for visiting a really skilled orthodondist. What do you think, does it really need some medical treatment? Many thanks for all your comments! Franz Bernhard
  10. It took some time, but thanks to Covid-19 (!! - see acknowledgements) its out now: A Systematic Study of upper Silurian (Ludfordian) Nautiloid Cephalopods from the Eggenfeld Section (Graz Palaeozoic, Styria, Austria) (pdf, external site) Here is my last visit to that site: Visiting some of the oldest fossils of Styria, Austria (Silurian orthocerids and brachiopods) - Fossil Hunting Trips - The Fossil Forum Best of all, some of my former specimens are pictured in that paper, especially some polished sections (see acknowledgements). Franz Bernhard
  11. Hello, last Saturday (10/09/2021), I visited again some classic fossil sites at Waagraben, Hieflau, northern Styria, Austria with a friend. These sites are known since around 1850, are probably of Coniacian age and belong to the Gosau-group. First, some maps: Overview with location of Waaggraben in Styria, a geological map from Ampferer, 1935 (1 = rudists; 2 = Trochactaeon; 3 = Conglomerate quarry), topo-map, and DEM. These sites are very well known, so no problem to pinpoint them exactly on maps: On the way. We will meet this guy in the background near the car again: Conglomerate quarry: First, we visited the surroundings of a historic conglomerate quarry, first mentioned in 1509 and intermittently worked until 1974. It worked an interglazial, well cemented, mostly white conglomerate, used as high-quality building stone or mill stone, but sometimes also as decorative stone. This are the remnants of the old smithy, the quarry itself is heavily overgrown: View back with some houses of Hieflau, to the left some remnants of the smithy: Rudist site: Lots of rudists (mostly hippuritids, some radiolitids, few plagioptychides), mostly found at both sides (shoulders/berms) of the forest road. This time I focused also on specimens with large diameter (Vaccinites) and we found a few. (I have seen one from this site in a collection, but have not stumbled upon one during my last visits from 2014 to 2015. But when you know...). The rudist outcrop near the road is also still there and untouched. Found also a few Plagioptychus, but they were not my goal. Lots of rudists also in the steep forest below the road, coming all from periodical road cleaning/grading. Funnily, the furious forest ranger showed up (we knew already that such a crazy guy is around in that area). He shouted: "No digging, no digging!! I have your car number." "We are only looking at the road." "A fat lot I care about that (Nice translation of Styrian "Das ist mir wurscht!"), but no digging, no digging, I have your number." Turning around and escaping with high speed. Such a crazy guy . Overall view from southeast and northwest, respectively. A little bit to the upper right from the center of the second pic, you can see some old diggings. This is what the guy was crazy about: "No digging!!". But I can understand, look at the tall outcrop of rudist limestone above the road. Severe undercutting not recommended! At the red X is the "permanent" rudist outcrop at the forest road: Rudist outcrop at forest road, its composed of Hippurites species. There exits a master thesis from 2015 about this site and the surrounding, if anybody is interested: Waaggraben Rudist Limestone (in English, ca. 6 MB, pdf, hosted at Uni Graz): Rudist fragments (mostly Hippurites) below this outcrop, as found: Some crushed pseudocolonies of Hippurites, as found, pseudocolony in second pic is 16 cm high: Trochactaeon site 1: In the year 2014, I found several Trochactaeon in the shoulder/berm of the forest a little bit downhill of the rudist site. Yesterday, dozens of snails showed up, all at the surface of the shoulder. (The driveway itself has foreign gravel spread over it). At one spot, they seem to crop out in the shoulder (red x). I took a total of 6 specimens, how many snails can you spot in the second pic? The host rock of the snails is a sandy marl with lots of white spots, made of an unknown fossil (at least unknown to me). You can see some to the left of the red object in the second pic: Trochactaeon site 2: This is the classic (known since about 1850) Trochactaeon site at Waaggraben. Its situated near the creek and it has changed considerably since my last visit in 2016, because the area above the digs was clearcut some years ago. Due to better lighting, the steep hillslope is now quite heavily overgrown with grass and such things, you have to know where the digs have been located. Anyways, just a few meters downstream, a new dig hole has been opened up by someone, and was last visited only a few weeks ago. Lots of Trochactaeon left behind (everything is veeery muddy, not easy to spot), but we took nothing, we had enough. New dig hole (red x) and debris below, veeery dirty, very dangerous (overhang!), no fun to work in that hole: Old dig holes, barely visible: Pic from 2014 showing about the same area with well visible dig holes: View from above with one quite recently activated old dig hole (red x): Here are some polished specimens of Trochactaeon from Waaggraben of my finds from 2014, box is 40x30 cm: Polished specimen with typical "spotted" host rock (sandy marl) Hope, you enjoyed a little bit . Thanks for looking! Franz Bernhard
  12. I don´t know if I can find the time to prepare fossil hunting trip reports for TFF regularly. However, I will at least try to prepare them regularly for my personal website in pdf format. I would like to share them with you. They are in German, though: Fossil Hunting Trips 2021 (link to my personal website) Thanks! Franz Bernhard
  13. Hello, Another hunting trip for rudists to the Campanian of St. Bartholomä in western Styria, Austria (09/15/2019). I have hunted these heaps of stones, collected from the former nearby fields (now meadows) over centuries, several times before, but there seems to be always something to find. I found six "good" specimens in 2 hours - and that´s exactly my usual yield in this formation . First topo map, geological map, relief map and aerial photograph of "Point 32". No problem to make everything public, nobody is interested in this stuff (well, except me...). Views from my parking place and from the way to the heaps: Some impressions of the heaps. First row is the western, lowermost end of the east-west trending with a small dig. A small, but quite nice radiolitid from this hole is to the left of the pocket knife. A second radiolitid was also found there. Second row shows some parts of the upper, north-south trending heaps. Third row shows to the left a fragment of a Hippurites nabresinensis (nearly in-situ, a small part was exposed). To the right, a freshly exposed, but still nearly in-situ Vaccinites is visible to the right of the red object; a small part of this rudist was also already exposed. Its the area shown in the pic above. Well, no pocket knife, already lost...
  14. Hello, several weeks ago, I presented a rudist recovery "operation" from the Afling-formation of the Gosau-group of Kainach (Upper Cretaceous): Well, the same day I have discovered the rudist zone featured above, I have also discovered a rudist zone about 100-200 m stratigraphically deeper. It is confined to an about 1 m thick, very dark limestone bed rich in various rudist and echinoid remains. The limestone belongs to the Geistthal-formation, considering the limestone is still located within the sequence with some red clastic rocks, suggesting strong terrestrial influence in some layers. The limestone can be traced for at least 500 m along strike; at the footwall, it develops gradually from a conglomerate, in the hangingwall it is sharply overlain by fine-grained sandstone to siltstone. Here is a schematic map of the area, including also the Trochactaeon-bearing zone. In this post, I am dealing here with the "Liegende Rudisten-Zone". 59 = Geistthal-formation; 54 = Afling-formation, squares are 2x2 km. The fossils stick firmly to the limestone. But there are some impure zones (sandy-silty) within the limestone, where, with the help of some weathering, some fossils largely free of matrix can be found. Two zones of this kind are known at the moment, a natural outcrop in the forest and an outcrop at a forest road, which will be presented here. Approaching the outcrop (well, that pic was taken after the dig...): The outcrop was completely overgrown at the beginning, and this was the third day of working at this outcrop. You can see the worked area and the area prepared for today. The red x are markers placed above wooden marker sticks and about 1 m apart from each other. The soft zone between the hard limestone beds is visible. Sorry for the rather poor pics, my scrappy camera had a hard time dealing with that kind of lighting (clear sky and full shadow). Detail of the area to be worked today, still with vegetation: Vegetation cleared, first rudist found, a fragmentary Vaccinites, below the left red x. The pen is 13.7 cm long. Work in progress, "two" Vaccinites discovered. Only after some time I recognized, that this is a bouquet: Work practically finished, another Vaccinites discovered (4963). Turned out to be one of the nicest so far: Beside these Vaccinites, a few Plagioptychus aguilloni were also found in that area. But what to do with the rudist bouquet? Leaving in the outcrop or recover? I decided to recover, because it was already a little bit loose and already broken in several parts. And a one of a kind find until now. Here is the recovery, P.a. denotes a Plagioptychus aguilloni, numbers indicate individual Vaccinites specimens: The recovery ended in 8 fragments. I numbered them to help reassembling them together. This bouquet appears to be in live position, but this can also be by pure chance. Maybe closer examination with give some hints. That´s the outcrops after the work of this day, with the position of the specimens featured above indicated and before their recovery: If you are interested in the other days at this outcrop, have a look at this: 05/22/2021 (link to my homepage, in German, pdf, ca. 2.9 MB) 05/30/2021 (link to my homepage, in German, pdf, ca. 5.8 MB) From this few meters of outcrop, I have recovered ca. 10-15 Vaccinites, 5-10 Plagioptychus aguilloni and several radiolitid rudist until now. A great surprise was one large Trochactaeon snail intermixed with all the rudists (see link to 05/30/2021 above). I don´t take all fossils with me, about half of them I am leaving at the outcrop, so only approximate numbers. In the pavement of the forest road below the outcrop, I have also dug out about 15 Vaccinites specimens. Then there is the outcrop within the forest, which yielded also at least a dozen Vaccinites, still with a lot of potential. And all the other outcrops of the rudists limestone that I have not checked out in detail yet for loose rudists. Also still a lot of potential there and still a lot to do.... Hope, you enjoyed ! Franz Bernhard
  15. Hello! Having discovered some new rudist occurrences in the lower part of the upper Santonian - lower Campanian clastic-marine Afling-formation at Römaskogel hill near Kainach, western Styria, Austria, about 6 weeks ago. Here I would like to present a very specific visit to one of these sites at 05/15/2021. It was aimed to recover some more parts of already known rudists from the outcrop at site #30. Here we go! Approaching Römaskogel, the hill in the middle. Its 1006 m high, the snowy mountain in the background is the Gleinalpe mountain, nearly 2000 m high: Already near Römaskogel hill, again the hill in the middle. These meadows are much steeper than they appear in the pic: Location of the rudist outcrop along a forest road: Rudist outcrop, scale is 1x1 m. The rudist-bearing zone is about 80 cm thick and tips gently towards south to southeast. Individual conglomeratic rudist-bearing beds are separated by layers of siltstone. The whole extensions of the rudist-bearing zone seems to be at least about 300 m, with about 5 outcrops and indications known until now. This is the best outcrop discovered so far. Right part of the rudist outcrop. At the lower end of the scale, the next pic. The digging spot of this day is to the left of the pen: Rudists ("Vaccinites Rö1") in conglomerate in the outcrop, diameter is about 5 cm: The digging site as left at 05/06/2021 and found again a week later at 05/15/2021. I had already recovered two parts of #4901 and one part of #4910. The soft siltstone in the footwall of the rudist bed clearly facilitated the recovery of the remaining parts from the relatively hard conglomerate. The pen is 13.7 cm long: Intermediate stage of recovery. The rudists are orientated parallel to the bedding plane. They are flattened, the two big ones lying with the flat side on the bedding plane. The smaller one is orientated "on edge" to the bedding plane: Here is a primitive, highly schematic and out-of-scale sketch of the situation. #4901 and #4910 are also oriented antiparallel: Dig site after removing all the rudists. #4901 yielded two more fragment (total of 4), with the very last tip still remaining in the outcrop. #4910 yielded also two more fragments (total of 3, completely recovered). #4914 recovered in two fragments: Right part of the rudist outcrop after recovery of these three rudists. Notice the difference to the start of the recovery : Here is the complete specimen #4910. It consists of 4 fragments, that were already naturally broken. Uppermost part was found 05/01/2021, next part was found 05/08/2021, lower most parts are from 05/15/2021. The rudist is strongly flattened (about 1:2), as most of the specimens from this bed, and about 21 cm long. I don´t know the species yet, working name is "Vaccinites Rö2". (Remember, nothing was known in that area until about 6 weeks ago.) The shell has a flame-like structure, which can be nicely seen in the naturally weathered transverse section. These structure corresponds to the fine longitudinal striation of the shell. Otherwise, the rudist is smooth without any ribs. In the cross section, the P-pillars are barely visible to the right, the L-pillar is not visible: Not much time was put into this recovery, most of the day was spent prospecting an area nearby. "Discovered" a freshly widened forest road (actually as wide as a good highway!) which perfectly exposes the mostly alluvial and reddish Geistthal-formation and the following clastic-marine Afling-formation for some 100 m thickness. Not much was found, but its a very, very impressive section. Here is my prospecting area (Römaskogel is in the lower left corner) and route (in blue) of that day. Red R indicate the last (highest) reddish beds: Still a lot to walk and observe during my next trip, especially to the east of the already explored area.... You never know what you will find. For example, #45 and #46 are small Trochactaeon indications. But these will be followed up next spring, when the green has gone again. Or not at all . I only made one pic during prospecting, that of a thin (1-2 cm) seam of subbituminous coal withing silt-claystone, located between conglomerate beds (#47). Such occurrences are well-known in that area: So, that was quite a typical day in the field for me: Some collecting at known sites, but more prospecting for new sites! Thanks for looking and your interest! Franz Bernhard
  16. Icy? Well, compared to some areas in the US or Moscow, it had only a few degrees below zero (Celsius) last Sunday. The nights had about -10°C, the days about -2°C. This period lastet from last Friday to Monday. No snow at all and very, very dry air. The last two days we had about 0°C during the night and +10°C maximum during the day. Still very dry. So without any snow and clear, but "cold" weather, I checked out a few Miocene sites around St. Josef in western Styria, Austria. I have made a detailed report about the area more then a year ago here: Rocks and fossils were mostly firmly frozen to the ground, and in some places more than 10 cm long fibrous ice was growing from the ground, pushing up leaves, soil and in some places fossils. Sites looked mostly the same as during my last visit, except Höllerkogel-10. Here at Höllerkogel-10, the farmer had removed a little bit of material from the bank of the forestry road. The sites contains mainly Granulolabium snails, but also a variety of other molluscs (see topic above). A little bit surprising last Sunday were an echinoid mold and a leaf impression, both ready to be picked (see pics, fossils as found frozen to the ground ). Echinoids are known from this site, but I have not seen myself such a "big" leaf in this formation until know. First I thought that this leaf is a recent leaf, sticking to the rock. But it isn´t, its a fossil. The echinoids occur as molds in the upper part of the outcrop; the lower part contains quite well preserved shell fossils (gastropods and bivalves). Nearly everything was frozen to the ground, of course, and large blocks of fossiliferous sediment were frozen hard like concrete. Maybe I will visit the site again in the near future to pick through some of the fresh debris. The large blocks have probably disintegrated then. That´s all, thanks for looking! Franz Bernhard
  17. Saturday, 02/06/2021 St. Bartholomä-Formation (Campanian), Styria, Austria - mainly rudists of the hippuritid and radiolitid family. This was my first fossil trip since more then 3 months due to too much Covid first and too much snow lately. But now snow has melted, at least in St. Bartholomä. Note: Austria is still in so-called "hard lockdown", but you can drive around like crazy in our country, as long as you stay in your car overnight . I did not, I am doing only day trips, and St. Bartholomä is only a 30 km drive. - First I visited two low-productive sites, checked out small creeks again and a quarry, that is only barely accessible also in winter because of too much prickly blackberrys. At least I saw some good outcrops there, but not the right layer ("Knödelbrekzie") nor any rudists. - Switched over to the quarry at Point 25, my most productive site in this formation. Something has been coming down to the quarry floor during the winter, but no rudist etc. Examined my dig site higher up at the northern end of the quarry ("Point 25-North"), also some loose fresh material, but nothing. Started picking rocks from the undisturbed debris below the "Knödelbrekzie" outcrop and found indeed some ok rudists and a small coral colony. Still some potential here. I already know that there are fossils coming down also at the southern end of the fossiliferous "Knödelbrezie" in this quarry, but it is hard to reach from the quarry floor. However, it looked possible to reach it from above. And that was really the case. Some kind of bench has naturally formed at the edge of the quarry, exactly at the level of the fossiliferous "Knödelbrekzie". It had already disintegrated somewhat (which is good, even necessary!), forming a debris of cobbles intermixed with soil and earth. During unsystematic scuffing in the debris, I found indeed two quite good radiolitid rudists and a large limestone piece with two enclosed rudists, which I left behind. This is the site, called "Point 25-South", after scuffing, looking from the south end towards north. Funny thing, it came already with a handrail for safety . Its going down for about 5 meters to the right, steep, but not vertically. The fossiliferous layer ("Knödelbrekzie") and the debris is accessible for about 3-4 m horizontally at the moment. Maybe I will exploit this site systematically during this year, forming a horizontal, about 0.5 m wide and safe bench along the way to the north. Maybe not. I don´t know yet. I have quite a lot of rudists from St. Bartholomä and would like to do also other things . - Already quite late, I took a quick look at the overgrown heap of fieldstones at point 32. The electric fence running along the heap was turned off so I took the chance to remove some rocks under a root ball at the other side of the fence. From my perspective removing the rocks, I did not see "it", only as I moved a little bit, I saw it there, sitting deep under the root ball like an egg in its nest: Lower left is my first sighting, to the right after removing some earth and more rocks, just before picking. Its a good sized radiolitid rudist, about 7x7x7 cm, with coarse ribs. It was a very nice day out, good exercise (mainly stretching ), found a few fossils at a known spot, found a new, possibly productive spot and also a nice "Easter Egg". Links to some former trips to this formation: St. Bartholomä - 1 St Bartholomä - 2 (Point 32) Franz Bernhard
  18. Could not resist collecting some more Trochactaeon snails at Breitenbach-11 in Kainach, Styria, Austria last Saturday (10/10/2020). Especially the upper T-bed contains rather well preserved (for the formation, of course ) snails. But always the right amount of weathering is needed (not too much, leads to disintegration of snails; not to less, they will adhere firmly to the rock). Still some potential there. Worked only with a screwdriver, needed only a few very gentle hammer taps. No prepping, just a short brush with a soft tooth brush. For more info about the area, have a look at my previous post: Trochactaeon - Gosau of Kainach, Styria, Austria - Summary Franz Bernhard
  19. Hello! I have collected quite many specimens with Trochactaeon snails from April to May 2020. They all come from the Upper Santonian to Lower Campanian upper Geistthal-formation or Lower Afling-formation of the Gosau of Kainach in western Styria. Some of the specimens contain abundant black, wavy, "folded", shell fragments. They seem to grow on the Trochactaeon snails in some places. They resemble small oysters in some ways. Unfortunately, I have not found anything conclusive about their identity. I found a pic in a paper of Kollmann (2014), with some somewhat similar, unidentified bivalves growing on an Upper Cretaceous snail (last pic). Other accompanying fossils are very rare fragments of phaceloid coral colonies (they to not grow on the snails, though). Any suggestions are highly welcomed! Thank you very much! Franz Bernhard First specimen is a double sided polished slab with abundant black shell fragments. Some of them seem to have grown on the Trochactaeon snails (epibiontic?). Here are some individual polished snails with bivalve fragments. Some of them seem to have grown on the snails (white polygons). The circular things in the middle left pic seem to be the same; there is a snail shell just a few mm below the polished surface at this spot (the specimen is very thin there). Rarely, also on weathered surfaces these bivalves(??) can be seen, growing on the snail shell. But I am not really sure, if this is the same thing as in the polished sections or if this is something else: This is the reference pic from Kollmann (2014), epibiontic bivalves on Nerinella grossouvrei. Thanks a lot!
  20. From time to time, I would like to post specimens from the Campanian St. Bartholomä-formation in Styria, Austria, in this thread. For the first specimen, I was motivated by this thread: http://www.thefossilforum.com/index.php?/topic/91459-is-this-a-rudist-fossil/ So the first specimen is a fragment of a large Vaccinites alpinus, with only two pillars - and not much else. Franz Bernhard
  21. Hello, I would like to ask for opinions about this 5 mm "tall" gastropod. Its from the Langhian - Miocene (15 Ma old) "Florianer Schichten" of the Styrian Basin in western Styria, Austria (St. Josef, site Fuggaberg-3). Other molluscs at this site are Granulolabium, Terebralia, Anadara, Acanthocardia, tellinid bivalves, oysters, naticids, buccinids etc. Many thanks for your help! Franz Bernhard
  22. Hello, here I am again with a gastropod from the "Florianer Schichten" of the Styrian basin, Austria (Miocene - Langhian). Its from my hunting trip at "Höllerkogel-18", St. Josef, from 08/16/2018: http://www.thefossilforum.com/index.php?/topic/87561-fossil-hunting-at-höllerkogel-18-st-josef-styria-austria-miocene-langhian-ca-15-ma-08162018/ It seems to be a Roxania species, possibly close to R. utriculus (Brocchi, 1814) or R. lamarckii (Deshayes, 1863)? Hight of the gastro is ca. 12 mm. What do you think? Thanks for your oppinion! Franz Bernhard
  23. FranzBernhard

    Oncoids - Oncolites

    04/13/2020: End of my lock-down. Visited a locality with oncoids-oncolites in the Santonian - Lower Campanian Geistthal-formation (59) of the Gosau-basin of Kainach. Locality is near Kreuzwirt south of Geistthal and was told to my by a friend, so I will keep it secret. This is a specimen from block 1. Most of block 1 is still there, I removed only about 2 kg (2 specimens) of the about 40 kg heavy block. Only two more blocks of this material were found, despite really good outcrops just nearby (with alternations of conglomerates, sandstones and siltsones). There should be a better locality west of Geistthal, but have not found anything there during previous visits. Last but not least some typical landscape of the Gosau-basin of Kainach. Cherry trees etc. are blooming at the moment, but everything was soooo try. But we finally had some rain during last night! Franz Bernhard
  24. From the album: Gastropods and Bivalves Worldwide

    22x7cm. Florianer Schichten Middle Miocene From Pottachberg, Styria, Austria Thanks to Franz Bernhard
  25. Ludwigia

    Divaricella ornata (Reeve 1850)

    From the album: Gastropods and Bivalves Worldwide

    12mm. Florianer Schichten Middle Miocene From Bramberg, Styria, Austria Thanks to Franz Bernhard
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