Fossil Friday – Carboniferous mollusks

As Brett, Tim, and I headed back to Virginia after our fossil plant collecting trip to Beckley, West Virginia a couple of weeks ago, we made a second brief collecting stop in Princeton, WV. Several years ago, Tim and I stumbled onto a fossiliferous outcrop while fixing a flat tire of my field truck, so we revisited this site to collect some specimens for WSC.

The outcrop exposes the Late Carboniferous Pride Shale Member of the Bluestone Formation, which seems to represent a shallow intertidal environment. It looks like all the fossils we collected are tiny pteroid mollusks, most of which are less than 2 mm long. We collected a few small pieces of shale (the outcrop is weathered, and the shale tends to fall apart), which contains perhaps 50-100 mollusk specimens. There is also a possibility that fossils of other organisms could turn up once we’ve had a chance to examine the rocks more carefully.


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