Many fossil collectors will tell you that there’s a story behind each of their finds. They also have one or two specimens in their collection that are their favorite. I would like to share my story on my favorite fossil find.
It was April 2001, the second year in a row that the Dry Dredgers scheduled a fieldtrip at the Maysville, Kentucky roadcut. The weather was perfect for collecting- sunny and not too hot or muddy. If you have ever collected at this location, determining where to start your search can be overwhelming. After looking up and picking a spot, I remember walking up a small grade on the side road and then hiking up a grassy hill that led to the uppermost strata of the cut on the main road. Another Dry Dredger member, Steve Felton, was there and had an area cordoned off with string and garden stakes and was using a shovel to dig into the hillside. I passed him and walked a few yards away and started my search. After finding a few crinoid calyxes and several species of bryozoans, I spied something sticking out of the hillside. One end of a fossil specimen was sticking out of the soft gray clay. I took a butter knife and dug the specimen out of the clay and hillside. After I examined it closer, I thought I knew its identity, but a short time later, Steve came over and he confirmed that it was a Conularia formosa specimen. I took it home and cleaned it using a toothbrush and hand soap. The preservation of this specimen is most impressive. Fine details are easily seen without the use of a hand lens. It was not touched with an air abrasive. The photos are taken on a black velvet background with a smartphone camera.
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- The Story Behind My Favorite Find: A Maysvillian Conularia - November 27, 2020