Monday, December 7, 2015

Fossil Hunting with your Grandchildren

I have always loved fossils. There is something mystical about touching things that you know were here millions of years ago. So, as part of our vacation I scoped sites nearby where we were going where we could go fossil hunting. Sometimes these areas are private property and you need permission to enter the area, but lucky for us we visited an area that was not restricted.

I sometimes rent a house at Cobscook Bay in Maine. This is passed Arcadia National Park near Lubec. Here the area is still what Arcadia must have been years ago, very primitive, very few tourists and really wonderful places to visit and enjoy. One of the places we visited was what they call Reversing Falls.

Cobscook Bay is part of the Bay of Fundy, the very beginning of it, and the tides are enormous. So there is a site that the fall of the tide makes the waters reverse into a stream and that area is called Reversing Falls.

The area is Silurian in age and along the beach there is a cut that if looked carefully you will find Fossils. We came at about 10:00 am. during low tide and work the rock during the morning. The kid loved it. There is nothing like finding your own specimens.

Samples were collected by me, my son and my grandkids at this coastal site. This is part of the Edmnund Formation which s is a fossiliferous area forms by muddy marine sediments. This area is Silurian and Devonian in age, with some volcanic activity at the same time. Edmund Formation Tuff-breccia of Whiting Bay is a resistant rock type. Bring good hammer. Age at about 419 to 424 Million years Old.

We found several fossils: Orthocone is a straight shell Nautiloid Cephalopod that lived during the late Cambrian to the late Triassic. Atraypa is a Brachiopod round and egg shaped with fine radial ridges. Lower Silurian to upper Devonian. Sphaerirhynchia wilsoni appeared on the Silutrian era. This is a globular species comm9on in limestone.

So grab your kids or grandkids, a hammer and some maps and go treasure hunting!