Today’s report will be relatively short. Despite the cold, my crew soldiered on to join me in the pit to begin the process of uncovering the area of the Calvert Formation I want to work on during this excavation. Task 1: remove the snow and ice still on the outcrop! Task 2: Start removing the overburden (alluvial sediments that washed onto the outcrop since last year and the overlying Choptank Formation).
The first image (above, left) is of a Syllomus (turtle) shell fragment, possible 1st costal or a lateral scute. The second image (above, right) is the lower tooth of an Aetobatus (eagle ray). These identifications are courtesy of the CCQ expert, Dr. Alton Dooley.
In addition to the turtle and ray fossils, we also found several shark teeth, including the above Hemipristis (snaggletooth shark) tooth, and a very small vertebral epiphysis from a cetacean of some variety.
And lastly, a selfie with my crew of volunteers for this first week of excavation! Our fingers are crossed, hoping that the weather predictions are not as severe nor persistent as presented. More updates tomorrow!