Solite Day 9

The Cow Branch Formation (the unit exposed at the Solite Quarry) was originally described as being non-fossiliferous. There are days on an excavation when it’s easy to see why. We did actually find some fossils today, including a partial Tanytrachelos, a few good plants, and a few insects, but it wasn’t a big haul for some 50 person-hours of work. However, Nick and Cindy did find a potentially very significant specimen in the spoil piles from much lower in the section.

At first glance the specimen doesn’t look like much (above), but when viewed up close the red areas appear to be bone:

The white circular areas on the right in the top photo have a concentric internal structure – possible teeth?

The circular features are also found on the other side of the specimen, and one of these has a surface texture that also suggests a tooth:

Large bones (more than a few millimeters in diameter) are almost unheard of at Solite, so even though this isn’t the best specimen in the world it’s still unusual for the site. We’ll have to wait until it’s prepared to make a reasonable guess at an identification.

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