Saturday, January 23, 2010

Kope Formation Fossils

The rain has stopped and the temperature is in the 50s degrees F so it was time to get out and do some fossil collecting. These fossils were found in Kope Formation in Carroll County, Kentucky. These creatures existed in the Ordovician Period. These first two images are of an enrolled Flexicalymene trilobite that has not been prepped yet so I am not sure if its cephalon is intact or not.

This small clam fossil is quite a find. Its shell has been replaced with aragonite (brown calcite?) and both sides are there. The middle of both sides has eroded out though. This clam was called Ambonychia.

This fossil is an orthoceras type cephalopod that has part of its aragonite shell exposed that was covered by bryozoan. Note: I am not sure this brown material is aragonite because from what I read that form of calcium carbonate is not particularly stable and is eventually replaced by calcite.  Would it be possible the bryozoan layer protected this fossil in aragonite form from mineral replacement?

Here is a Cryptolithus trilobite that has its cephalon with its lace collar and glabella.  It also has  an Ambonychia clam shell fragment attached.


The fossils are small but it was fun finding them.

Dinosaurs Alive! at Louisville Zoo

The Louisville Zoo will be hosting an animatronic dinosaur exhibit from March to October 2010.  These 16 dinosaur models will roar and move like living animals.  See robotic creatures like the Brachiosaurus (Late Jurassic), Deinonychus (Early Cretaceous), Cryolophosaurus (Early Jurassic), and Tyrannosaurus rex (Late Cretaceous).

The zoo will also have a hands on activity so kids can be a paleontologist and study a fossil site with brushes and sifters to discover dinosaur remains.  The gift show will have a place to buy dinosaur merchandise at the Shopasaurus.

The exhibit was created by Billings Productions of McKinney, Texas.  Visit their website to get an idea of the types of dinosaurs produce.

Regular zoo admission will have a special attraction fee of $4 for Zoo members and $5 for non-members.  Children age 2 and under are free.  Call the zoo at (502) 238-5348 for more info or visit their website at

 Real fossils are on display as well like this fish fossil from the Green River Formation of Wyoming probably from the Eocene Period (approximately 55-35 million years ago).