Following on from last Friday's post about my gemstone collection, I thought it would be fun to share my miniature fossil collection as well. It's something I've been interested in for a while, and while it's considerably smaller than my gemstone horde, it's slowly growing and just makes my inner geologist happy, so without further ado, here is my miniature fossil collection!
This post is quite wordy again, so if you want to skim read and just look at the photos, that's perfectly fine. I tried my hardest to give some backstory to where I got each item, as well as some information about each of them, so I hope you enjoy!
1. Ammonites, shark teeth and crinoids!
This is my miniature little fossil collection, which I thought I'd start with. The large ammonite circlet was a gift from my university housemates during my first year and is one of my favourites out of the whole collection. The little ammonite to the left I bought when I first moved up to Cumbria, along with the crinoid stems which are the 3 tubes at the front. The shark tooth was a gift from the lovely Kezzie, which came with some other gems I'll feature later in this post!
Ammonites are now extinct marine molluscs which lived around 65 million years ago, as they died out around the end of the Cretaceous period. Their intricate shell spirals and whorls have always fascinated me. When I got the chance to write about these during my time at university for a very long assignment on the Permian Extinction, I was thrilled!
Crinoids are another marine species, which have often been referred to as star lilies due to their resemblance of flowers and plants and other species in their class are the beautiful feather stars. These stems are really interesting, with lots of patterns and rings throughout and it feels like you are literally holding a piece of time in your hands with these fossilised versions. There are still many of these creatures alive today, though they are now much less diverse than they once were.
The shark tooth I have was a gift from the lovely Kezzie, and with it's smaller size and fairly straight tooth it really reminds me of the lemon sharks teeth, but fossil shark teeth can be quite hard to identify and I haven't been able to pinpoint the exact species so it's a bit of a mystery!
This was one of the first fossils I bought, as the others in my collection had all been gifts up to this point. I love the snowflake effect in the dark stone here and the backstory to these creatures is fascinating. Another marine invertebrate, these creatures date back to the Silurian age, which is roughly around 416 million years ago, and were straight shelled nautiloids which belong to the same class as today's squids and octopus.
I got this particular fossil when I first moved up to Cumbria during my first visit to the amazing Rock Shop in Ambleside. If you're ever in the area and you're looking for fossils and gemstones, the Rock Shop are great and they also give out free leaflets and information cards on all of their gems and fossils too,
3. Found Fossils
This is one of my favourite pieces in my collection so far, as this was found by my lovely friend Vickie while we were at the beach during a geography field trip. As we were walking along the coast studying the cliffs and discussing erosion and sustainable ways to protect both the seaside, as well as the local residents, Vickie quickly bent down and picked up this, what I thought, was just a pebble, until she turned it around to show me the whorls of a shell inside it. Vickie already had a few of these back at her home, so she gave it to me, and it now sits proudly on my shelf.
I'm not too sure what the creature inside would have been, or where the indentations came from, so if there are any experience fossil experts out there who can tell me more, I'd love to know.
I did a little bit of research for this post to accompany my photos and if you're interested and want to find out more about the fossils I mentioned above, I've got some links below for you all.
Shark Teeth: http://www.elasmo-research.org/education/evolution/guide_f.htm
I'm linking up with the lovely Jen for Photo Friday today.
Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!