Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Ozarkodina Conodont Fossil

These fossils appear to be Ozarkodina willsi? conodonts found in either the upper Devonian New Albany Shale or middle Devonian Beechwood Limestone of Clark County, Indiana.

See the conodont.info web site to see Ozarkodina polita specimens: CLICK HERE and Ozarkodina tenuis specimens: CLICK HERE

Monday, January 30, 2012

Ilymatogyra arietina Pelecypod

An Ilymatogyra arietina pelecypod fossil found in Grayson Marl Formation of Tarrant County, Texas. Animals lived in the upper Cretaceous Period. Check out Dave's write up on this fossil on the Views of the Mahantango blog: CLICK HERE
Thanks to Mark for these fossils.

A smaller Ilymatogyra arietina pelecypod fossil is shown in the next three images.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Spyroceras Cephalopod

Two fossils are shown that might a Spyroceras cephalopod of the Mississippian Period. These fossils came from the Chesterian Zone of the Bangor Limestone Formation of Franklin County, Alabama.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Neochonetes granulifer Brachiopod

Neochonetes granulifer brachiopod fossil found in the Kewitz Shale of the Stanton Formation of the Lansing Group of Cass County, Nebraska. Fossil dates to the Upper Pennsylvanian Period. I posted a picture of a group of these fossils found at the natural history museum in Paris, France back in October 23, 2009: CLICK HERE

Learn more about this fossil at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln School of Natural Resources web site: CLICK HERE

Thanks to Mark for the fossil.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Fossilized Cancer Tumor

This fossil of a sauropod bone contains an elliptical shaped agate mass thought to be fossilized cancer tumor. Ouch, that looked painful! The picture was taken at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The accession number of the specimen is CM 72656 (Dinosauria indet.)

Learn more about cancers found in hadrosaurs at the Indiana public media site of A Moment of Science December 16, 2009 podcast about dinosaur cancer: CLICK HERE

Statue of Diplodocus sauropod outside the Carnegie Museum of Natural History.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Micro Fish Fossils

This posting shows some very small fish fossils. Some of them are parts of vertebrate and others I am not sure about. The specimens were obtained by Dr. Jim Conkin from material collected on one of his research trips. The fossils were photographed using a microscope set at maybe 15x.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Michigan Kona Dolomite

Kona Dolomite dated to over 2 billion years old.  Thought to be a cyanobacteria colony (stromatolite).  Found in the Kona Hills of Marquette County, Michigan.  These early oxygen producers paved the way for more advanced lifeforms of the future. This piece was profiled in an earlier posting. It has now been wet sanded and polished with a Dremel tool.  Has a nice reddish and pink color bands.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Moment of Science Podcast

While listening to the local public radio station WFPL recently, I heard a short audio segment called A Moment of Science. The show is a production of Indiana public media which is a producer and distributor of created content by Indiana University's WFIU public radio and WTIU public television. An archive of shows going back to 2003 are available for listening and reading on their web site.

Picture is of a Dracorex hogwartsia on display at The Children's Museum of Indianapolis. This dinosaur is discussed in the podcast (see link further down) about naming new dinosaur species. It is now thought to be a juvenile Pachycephalosaurus.

Here are links to the audio episodes of paleontological interest:

How Do Scientists Figure Out If A Dinosaur Is A New Species? (November 22, 2011)

Why Did The Stegoceras Dinosaur Have A Domed Head? (October 24, 2011)

Using X-Rays To Find The Color Of Fossilized Skin And Feathers (October 18, 2011)

Was Dinosaur "Sue" A Boy? (August 12, 2011)

Uncovering An Even Taller T.Rex (And Others!) (October 4, 2010)

A World Full of Dinosaurs (December 19, 2006)

Dinosaur Cancer (December 16, 2009)

Prehistoric Runways (November 30, 2009)

Isty-bitsy Dinosaurs? (February 25, 2009)

A Whale of Evolution (April 29, 2008)

Pregnant Teenage Dinosaurs (March 4, 2008)

Extinction by Volcano? (February 12, 2008)

Cloning T-Rex: The Difficulty With Cloning Dinosaurs (June 12, 2007)

The First Flowers (October 31, 2006)

Dinosaur Turkey! (October 18, 2006)

Plesiosaurs (September 5, 2006)

Dinosaur photo by Michael Popp.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Pentamerus nysius Brachiopod

 A Pentamerus nysius brachiopod found in the Niagaran layer of Jefferson County, Kentucky. This fossil is one of the larger brachiopods found in the area. This Silurian Period creature tended to fossilize together. Thanks to Kenny for extracting it.

Friday, January 13, 2012

The Camouflaged Fossil

So I am out in the field and picking up limestone plates that contain sections of Archimedes bryozoan like the one shown in this picture.  One hopes to find Fenestella attached to the outer grove edges of the Archimedes that will be preserved in the plate. For the most part, it is just the screw part that is found.
This posting is about camouflaged fossils and when this limestone plate gets wet, it reveals the presence of a white crinoid arm. Not sure of the crinoid's identity but it was surprise when it was cleaned. Last image shows plate with ruler to give one some idea of its size.
The lesson I take away from this, is sometimes things are not as they first appear.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Billion Year Old American Fossils

Kona Dolomite dated to over 2 billion years old.  Thought to be a cyanobacteria colony (stromatolite).  Found in the Kona Hills of Marquette County, Michigan.  These early oxygen producers paved the way for more advanced lifeforms of the future.

These pieces were cut off a larger block and have just been sanded down.  I started using a sanding wheel with a belt sander attachment for the first time.  Sure beats doing it by hand as I have done in the past! Next step is to hand sand these pieces with wet sandpaper and then polish it with the Dremel tool.

The slabs were photographed wet to bring out nice colors.

Thanks to Kenny for helping me cut the slab with a diamond saw.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Ordovician Graptolites

Here are some pictures of graptolite specimens found a piece of limestone about 20 x 15 cm in size. The genus might be Geniculograptus (or Climacograptus). Fossil plate was found in Trimble County, Kentucky.  These animals existed in the Ordovician Period.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Fenestella Bryozoan Plate

This limestone plate is quite attractive showing how the Fenestella bryzoan laid on the sea floor and became fossils. There is some biodiversity as well with an unidentified brachiopod (maybe Orthotodes) and a branching bryozoan in the shape of a chicken wishbone.

Fossils are from the Mississippian Period Indian Springs formation of Crawford County, Indiana.