Anyone collect/hunt fossils?

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posted on Aug, 10 2012 @ 03:29 PM
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I admit I got the idea by searching for the topic and only finding this thread.
www.abovetopsecret.com...

But I am looking for something more specific and to the point.
I collected fossils as a kid just picking them up off the ground from where ever and around our pond (Smithville formation). As I grew older girls peeked my interest more and I left the fossils in a few boxes. Well early this year my son, wife and myself were hanging out at a creek and I came across a rather large (at least in my opinion) trilobite, or to be more exact a part of one.



My son loves dinosaurs and the fossil was of great interest to him which brought back to life my love of fossils.

I try to get out as often as I can. I admit for the most part if is a lot more work than it was when I was a kid because now I use hammer and chisel, rock saw, dental picks, brushes and all sort of other tools I did not have or understand back then. Now though I can get stuff out that is not just lying about even if it takes an hour or more to free from its rock prison.

I have met some local people that have taken me under their wing and have become mentors so to speak. I have the great joy of being able to say I have found sharks teeth in Missouri that look just like those I have found on the beach in Florida. It took a bit of sifting of loose soil but I have found a few.



To date though my best find has been two trilobites in a small chert nodule found in the same creek as the first this time with only my son and myself. The best part about it is I found it as is. I did not have to prep it with any tools. I could possibly try to free up more of the trilobites but chert is very hard to work with and I would risk damaging the fossils which I am unwilling to do.



I do not sell nor plan to sell any of my finds. Not only because I do it for education, the cool factor, and relaxation, but because for the most part they are not worth much. Even the best find to date would be no more than probably $30 at most. For me fossils are about trying to understand a past, trying to understand the vast distance of time, and seeing something that no other person has seen (until I show it to them) by uncovering something that has not been free for millions of years.

So I was wondering if there are any here who share the same passion as I do? Please share some of your finds, experience, and just why you do it. I have been spending the warm months finding and collecting and I will spend the cooler months prepping. I still need to build a blasting cabinet though so that I am not sitting at the garage door with mask and glasses air abrading fossils.

Raist




posted on Aug, 10 2012 @ 03:56 PM
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Thats so cool, weird to think they were alive once. Great finds op!



posted on Aug, 10 2012 @ 04:11 PM
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reply to post by rambo1112
 


Thanks, the photos above are only three of the finds I have. I have stuff from different time lines and many different formations. I live not far from the only place in Missouri where dinosaur fossils have been found. Those are quite rare here only a very tiny portion of Missouri has the strata for dinosaurs. The majority of the finds here are ocean life and finding full trilobites is a rare treat.

A few of us on a forum dedicated to fossils were talking about why we do it. Then the subject of time came up.

I admit it is really hard to wrap my mind around such stuff for the most part. It is sort of like finding bits and pieces to some sort of fairy tale, only this one is true. I mean really it is difficult to understand the time and the changes. I can research and discover that a fossil is 450 million years old and I can even say it every day. But really trying to understand that is incredibly difficult in my opinion. I struggle with trying to understand the time and changes that have occurred.

I often catch myself day dreaming about some sort of time travel that would also keep my invisible and safe but allow me to study and just watch the past. Like I said it is like some sort of fantasy come to reality.

Raist



posted on Aug, 10 2012 @ 05:53 PM
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I have found arrow heads in a old river valley by my home , some have been dated over 5,000 years old!



posted on Aug, 10 2012 @ 06:08 PM
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reply to post by nighthawk1954
 


My father was really into arrowheads. I have all his stuff now, fossils are more my thing. My dad though had a small owl or man statue that I really liked. Lots of bird points and other stuff too.

Around here it is easy to find places where villages were.

Raist



posted on Aug, 11 2012 @ 01:18 AM
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Nice finds! I collect/find fossils, there is limestone where I live, used to be an ancient shallow sea, so it is fun to look around and then bring them home,cause you can't leave them.........



posted on Aug, 11 2012 @ 07:37 AM
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reply to post by Iamschist
 

Thanks.
Awesome. Yeah we have limestone deposits here as well. Some different types. Some of the formations around here have no fossils what so ever and others are basically nothing but fossils.

I am just learning about the formations and the different types of rock. One of my favorite places I have been to recently is the Fern Glen formation.
www.lakeneosho.org...

i was not lucky enough to find that little Bryozoan but one of my friends that was there found one. They are so cool, they look like little starfish.

Raist
edit on 8/11/12 by Raist because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 08:17 PM
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Here are a few of the fosil corals I have found.

Hexacorallia Tabulata Favosites (this could be a tabulate coral, though at this time it seems to be as listed until further research shows different)







Another Fovosites







A Dalmanite trilobite pygidium and thorax.





And this is called Beekite. If you see it it is not a fossil though it is a fossil replacement mineral.





www.newark.osu.edu...

I have a few where there is still fossil as well as Beekite though I do not have photos of those as of yet. It is interesting seeing both the fossil and the Beekite on the same specimen.

Raist

edit on 8/12/12 by Raist because: adding the possible correction for the family of first coral



posted on Aug, 12 2012 @ 09:43 PM
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As for keeping tack of my fossils I use a program on my laptop.

You can download it for free but it will only store 100 fossils, if you buy the key you can store unlimited fossils. So for $18 I bought the key. It is well worth the cost.

The program allows me to keep track of the time period the fossil is from, the location, the formation, it allows me to load photos of the fossil and the collection site as well. I can post in the cordinates and use Google maps to locate the site within the program and it allows me to track where I have the fossil stored (after I build my storage cabinets that is). I cannot say enough good things about the program, it is prefect for what any fossil collector/hunter needs.

For those interested it is called Trilobase.
www.trilobase.com...


As for another site that is really helpful right off the top is ..................

www.trilobites.info...

If you need to know anything about trilobite this is the site to go to.

Raist



posted on Aug, 13 2012 @ 06:56 PM
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I am still working on the ID of this brachiopod. I prepped it with dental picks and a small brass brush. This brachiopod comes from some boulders/rock from an unknown quarry. I cannot be certain but my guess and the guess of a few others is that it is from the Devonian period. If this is correct it is between 416-359.2 million years old. The guess though is that it is from the middle to upper Devonian ranging it from 379.5-359.2 million years old.





Here is a pair of unprepped and also unIDed brachiopods.



This is a gastropod operculate from the Smithville formation.
Basically it covered the snail after it went into its shell. Imagine a snail trapdoor in a basic sense.
The Smithville formation produces fossils from the Ordovician which was 488.3-443.7 million years ago. I believe these fossils are from the lower to middle Ordovician putting them 488.3-468.1 million years old. I have access to a small bit of this formation on family property.

There is also some information on it here at this link.
www.lakeneosho.org...





The picture is not the best but it is gastropod from the Smithville formation.



Here are some unIDed brachiopods from the Owl Creek/Crowley's Ridge formation.





Here are a few Turritella fossils from the same spot as the sharks teeth listed in the OP.

I found them in the Owl Creek/Crowley's Ridge formation. You can find some information on it in the link above as well.
This formation is from the Cretaceous period putting them at 145.5-65.5 million years old. I should point out that at this formation one can see the tsunami layer from the impact at the Chicxclub crater in the Yucatán Peninsula.

en.wikipedia.org...






While I was not at this gathering (I went later on after meeting someone allowed on the property) here is a link with images of the Owl Creek/Crowley's Ridge site and some fossils found there.
www.lakeneosho.org...


I hope you find this both entertaining and educational.



Raist
edit on 8/13/12 by Raist because: Correcting the formation on Owl Creek brachiopods.
edit on 8/13/12 by Raist because: Adding link to Owl Creek site.



posted on Aug, 15 2012 @ 09:20 AM
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Hey Raist,

Amazing thread. I’ve got a few fossils and during uni I did a few paleontology subjects. I also managed to get a job at the city museum geology/paleontology museum which included managing the rock collections, sorting through the fossils and occasionally using tiny dental drills to uncover fossils from the surrounding rock.

I’ve got a few fossils I personally collected but nothing quite as good as yours. I once found a fossil coral Lithostrotion a genus of colonial rugose coral which looked quite similar to yours coral - a large honey comb pattern through the limestone near where I live on the east coast of Australia. Cool thing was it wasn’t meant to appear the area for another 20 million years so it was quite possibly a new species but I’ve never had to pursue it.

Haven’t had much chance to collect any in the past few years though but hoe to get back into it someday though.

Thanks for sharing some of your finds.



posted on Aug, 15 2012 @ 10:22 AM
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reply to post by 1littlewolf
 


Thanks.
I would love to see some photos of your finds. Feel free to add them any time.

You should really find out if that coral is a new species or if it appeared earlier than first thought I would love to hear if it is a new species. What a lucky find that would be and the credit for the discovery would go to you even though you would not likely get to name it. As long as you could give a detailed location if not the formation would be of great interest to science.


I hope you get a chance to get back out and find more soon, it is really relaxing and exciting for me when I get out. My finds are not that great compared to some I see on The Fossil Forum. Some of the members on there find some amazing stuff. It is a mix of professional and amature paleontologists, they are greatly helpful when it comes to ID and finding the best tools to use. A person can really learn a lot from the members there.

Raist



posted on Aug, 17 2012 @ 07:53 PM
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I'm glad I've seen this thread.

You've spurred me to find my camera. I have a few macrofossils (mostly from New Zealand) that you might enjoy seeing.
I also have a digital microscope that I will get going sometime and try to get some good shots of radiolaria and foraminifera.

My work as a sedimentology/palaeontology technician at a University allows me to see and handle some beautiful fossils. I feel very privileged


Thanks for your pictures.

It's great fun,isn't it!



posted on Aug, 17 2012 @ 08:18 PM
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reply to post by aorAki
 


Thanks.

Wow, you are very lucky indeed. I am just a regular guy who does this stuff during my free time. I would love to see the stuff you get a chance to see.

I still have a ton to learn and a lot of work to get my prepping station together. I have found a lot and am behind in cleaning, prepping, photographing, IDing and entering them into my Trilobase program. I am not sure I will ever get caught up on this considering I have to squeezing in work and family as well lol.

I have a few fossils that can be seen with the naked eye but only if you have fairly good vision. You can make them out better with magnification. One of the best like this is a small bit of "netting" from a bryozoan. I found it by being on the ground skimming through very loose soil under an overhanging rock. I guess water dripping down helped to stir things enough and break loose everything just right.

But your specimens sound fascinating; I would love to see them.

I got out for about an hour today, mostly to claim some things I seen the other day when I was out with my son but did not have my tools. While walking along I found a rather large trilobite tail (I believe it might be Dalmanite, but there is not a lot to go by), it is not great shape but pretty cool none the less. It is such a stress relief to everyday life to get out and find fossils as well as prepping them. Of course using a chisel is sort of like an art as well. You really have to study and read the rock to figure out the best way to split it.

Raist



posted on Aug, 18 2012 @ 08:38 AM
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Originally posted by Raist

Thanks.
I would love to see some photos of your finds. Feel free to add them any time.


Thanks Raist. Most All of them are currently wrapped in newspaper in the back of my mum's shed. One day I hope to by a glass cabinet though and set some of the better ones out on display. If that happens anytime in the near future I will post a few up here.


You should really find out if that coral is a new species or if it appeared earlier than first thought I would love to hear if it is a new species. What a lucky find that would be and the credit for the discovery would go to you even though you would not likely get to name it. As long as you could give a detailed location if not the formation would be of great interest to science.


I know I'd love to. It describing and naming itwas originally going to be an honours project for me (got a geology degree) but life took a different turn back then (kids) so I had to start working. It now is probably sitting in the back of a cabinet somewhere in my universities geology dept. One day I intend to chase it up though.

It did win the '6 pack for the best fossil' award on that field trip though.




I hope you get a chance to get back out and find more soon, it is really relaxing and exciting for me when I get out. My finds are not that great compared to some I see on The Fossil Forum. Some of the members on there find some amazing stuff. It is a mix of professional and amature paleontologists, they are greatly helpful when it comes to ID and finding the best tools to use. A person can really learn a lot from the members there.

Raist


I have never really looked into actual fossil forums before. I probably spend to much time here as it is.... But you've inspired me to check them out sometime. Thanks again for the fantastic thread.



posted on Aug, 18 2012 @ 09:35 AM
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reply to post by 1littlewolf
 


Oh I see. Yeah when I returned to the collecting myself I tried to find all of my old fossils from when I was a kid. I would have been able to put most of them to a formation, because most of them came from our pond. Sadly though I only found about half of them, I really want to find the gastropod that is nearly the size of my fist. It was not a perfect preservation but it was well enough to possibly ID it. I would find a few fossils from time to time during my off time years but I never actively searched for them. I got more involved in following my hormones and things.

It seems a lot of people that are into this stuff have geology degrees. I wish I had one it gives everyone else a leg up on understanding this stuff lol. I feel so behind when talking to my mentors and a lot of other people. There is a ton of things to learn. I have gotten several books though to help me ID formations and it could help with the ID of certain rocks to a point.

I hope your specimen is still sitting at the university. A few years back one of my friends who does a bit of summer teaching at the local university said they cleaned out their cabinets of fossils that were not being used. Some had lost their ID or had never had one. He got some cool samples. I wish I had known about that and had gotten the chance to claim a few. Apparently they just tossed everything out. Finding something like that is still so cool What a lucky person you are.


Well if you ever get the chance stop by www.thefossilforum.com...
It is filled with some really great people. One woman there is digging up a Triceratops; others have been out with Bob Bakker. This is one guy I would love to sit and chat with some day.
en.wikipedia.org...

It has professional and amateur paleontologists. They are really good at helping with ID and helping you chose all the right tools.

Raist



posted on Aug, 18 2012 @ 09:47 AM
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reply to post by Raist
 



Originally posted by Raist.

It seems a lot of people that are into this stuff have geology degrees. I wish I had one it gives everyone else a leg up on understanding this stuff lol. I feel so behind when talking to my mentors and a lot of other people. There is a ton of things to learn. I have gotten several books though to help me ID formations and it could help with the ID of certain rocks to a point.


Paleontology was all part of the geology degree. And it was only 2 or 3 subject.

In Australia many people pay a one off fee just to attend a few subjects they’re interested without bothering to do an entire degree. I assume you’re in the states and I would also assume that you would also be able to do this. With your passion and your current background knowledge the subjects for you would be a breeze.

You should really look into this.


What a lucky person you are.


Luck indeed. I didn’t have a clue what it was til my tutor identified it for me. It definitely looked different which is the only reason I kept a piece for I was mostly looking for brachiopod and gastropod shell…



Well if you ever get the chance stop by www.thefossilforum.com...
It is filled with some really great people. One woman there is digging up a Triceratops; others have been out with Bob Bakker. This is one guy I would love to sit and chat with some day.
en.wikipedia.org...

It has professional and amateur paleontologists. They are really good at helping with ID and helping you chose all the right tools.

Raist


Thanks so much for the links. I will definitely check them out when I have the time.



posted on Aug, 18 2012 @ 03:38 PM
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Here is something else I want to share. The company I work for split our department off in a different plant on new ground when they built the new building they exposed a small rock formation in the back. Being curious I went out back on a night shift with a flashlight and found this cephalopod. The night I got it I had to chase a skunk away from my collecting site so that I could get the fossil. Neither darkness or skunks was going to keep me from this fossil as I had never found anything quite like this before.

It comes from the Decorah formation and is believed to be Ordovician in age, putting it at 488.3-443.7 million years old.

At this point it is unIDed because my understanding is that cephalopods are hard to ID even more so with so little of a fossil to view.















Here are some more cephalopod bits I found.







And a tiny cephalopod. I find this one very cool.


Here are a few brachiopods frmo the same formation that I have not bothered to try and ID yet.





There are two other cephalopods still in the rock that would require a rock saw to get out or several hours with a hammer and chisel. I spoke to my manager about getting them and he spoke to HR for me. However, since we are leasing the land it seems to be a no go unless those we are leasing it from give the okay. My manager has said that when he gets to see them next he will ask for me. So at this point I am limited to collecting lose specimens that have weathered from the rock. My manager does not seem to have a problem with me removing already lose rocks lol.

Some of these were removed with hammer and chisel before speaking to him about it so they got "grandfathered" in as being lose


Raist



posted on Aug, 19 2012 @ 08:53 AM
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I consider myself nothing more than a recreational fossil collector. I've always been partial to the brachiopods. Most of them would have been found while walking on the beach of a national park in the Great Lakes region.

Here are some of my favourites:






posted on Aug, 19 2012 @ 01:43 PM
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reply to post by GoneGrey
 


Wow, nice finds. You have some great corals there. It looks like you have 4 or so species there. What is the long spine looking thing though? I have not seen one of those before.

I really like those brachiopods you have there. My two favorite are the last one in the first row and the first one in the second row.

I bought a trilobite from a guy that got it along Lake Erie. There are really some lovely shale's up that way that produce some amazing fossils. It looks like some of your brachiopods might have come from some of those shale's.

Did you have to prep the brachiopods any or were they prepped by nature?

Raist





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