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3624 Views 8 Replies Last post: Jun 27, 2013 4:01 PM by MikeHardman RSS
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Jun 14, 2013 8:21 PM

Help with Fossil ID Required. Crocodile Scute?

Can anyone help ID this fossil. It was found in a stream bed in somerset.


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    Jun 14, 2013 9:04 PM (in response to |Bardot)
    Re: Help with Fossil ID Required. Crocodile Scute?



    Whereabouts in Somerset?

    Any chance of a close-up of the somewhat cylindical object in photo 2?

    Any other fossils seen in the immediate area?


    (I'm tempted to say it is fossil mud cracks, but the morphology is not ideal.)



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      Jun 16, 2013 8:13 AM (in response to |Bardot)
      Re: Help with Fossil ID Required. Crocodile Scute?

      Thanks for the further info.


      I gather from

      "...bedrock geology description: Farrington Member And Barren Red Member (Undifferentiated) - Mudstone, Siltstone And Sandstone. Sedimentary Bedrock formed approximately 306 to 308 million years ago in the Carboniferous Period. Local environment previously dominated by rivers."


      And the Farrington Member (Upper Coal Measures, Westphalian D age) is described as

      "Grey mudstone with subordinate sandstone (lithic arenite) beds and numerous thin coal seams associated with comparatively thick seatearth clays."


      I suspect this is the origin of your specimen. In that environment, mud cracks are possible.

      Crinoids (I'm sure that is what your specimen includes) are recorded from the Carboniferous limestone of the Mendips, but I have not found particular records of crinoids from the Farrington Member.


      So, I have not made much progress.

      I think a crocodile scute (osteoderm) is unlikely.

      Mud cracks as an idea has problems: the morphology of the plates and the fact that the layer seems to be composed of coarser sediment (silt) than that underlying it (mud). However, it is possible your specimen represents a small lobe of silty sediment deposited on muds, and desiccation caused shrinkage and cracking - which continued round the edge and a little way under the end of the lobe.


      The Radstock Museum includes items of geological interest; you could try asking their opinion.




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