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  #1  
Old 02/12/2005, 06:52 AM
dogfacepuffer dogfacepuffer is offline
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4 mill year old coral skeleton found

http://www.naplesnews.com/npdn/news/...542225,00.html
Thought this was interesting to read this morning. I don't know if it's as old as they are saying though.
  #2  
Old 02/12/2005, 07:03 AM
MiddletonMark MiddletonMark is offline
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That site requires a login.

Can you give a short synopsis?
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  #3  
Old 02/12/2005, 07:09 AM
dinoman dinoman is offline
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Says I have to register, and I don't feel like registering...but anyway...Probably wouldn't be that unlikely to find a coral skelton that's only 4myo. 4my in a geological time scale is mearly a blink of an eye. If I remember right "coral reefs" have been on earth for in the order of 300?-400?my. Was an article (I believe this months) in RK magazine about coral evolution, pretty interesting. I've found what I believe are a few fossilized coral skeltons here on the ranch, pretty darn cool...

-Dino-

Edit: This doesn't have to do with coral skeletons, but probably interesting to a few folks. Also on the ranch here I've found REALLY large fossilized mussle shells. One piece I have, if it was complete would measure pretty close to 3ft long. Also I've found large ammonite shells that are probably 1.5ft across (for you that don't know what a ammonite is, its from what I've read an extinct relative of the nautilus).
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  #4  
Old 02/12/2005, 07:15 AM
dogfacepuffer dogfacepuffer is offline
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By ERIC STAATS, emstaats@naplesnews.com
February 12, 2005

Paige Tobye wants to be a veterinarian when she grows up. She's 9.

Her friend Jenna Llamas, 8, isn't sure what she wants to be.

For now, though, they are fossil hunters, right in their own front yards in Golden Gate Estates.

Two scientists who have seen photographs of the discovery say the two girls probably have found a fossilized coral that could be 4 million years old, a reminder of Southwest Florida's ancient past.

One theory is that the coral was dug out of a local quarry and carried to the girls' neighborhood in a truckload of fill dirt or limerock.

"We were really amazed," Paige said, standing under a clump of trees near the site of the Big Find. "We were amazed."

Jenna and Paige, who live next door to each other on 15th Avenue Southwest, were playing a game of make-believe Indians about two weeks ago when they went looking for sticks under some brush.

They found what looked like a big rock — just the right shape for a pretend bowl to put some pretend food inside, they said.

Their brothers, Quinn Tobye, 7, and Alex Llamas, 10, had found it a few days earlier, thought it was an old turtle shell, and tossed it aside.

"It wasn't like we had to dig down 10 feet or anything, it was just sitting there," Jenna said.

When Jenna's mother, Maria, saw what the girls had uncovered, she took it to the Collier County Museum for a closer look.

Curator David Southall was the first to theorize that the girls had found, not a coral, but a fossilized sponge. He estimated it could be 20 million years old.

Maria had lunch with Jenna that day at Osceola Elementary School so she could relay the news.

"I was like, 'You've got to be kidding!'" Jenna said.

Whatever its exact age or identity, the fossil is something non-geologists don't come across very often.

Local quarries are chock-full of examples of fossilized corals and other marine life, said geologist Mike Savarese, a professor of marine sciences at Florida Gulf Coast University.

Quarries are tapping into what, eons ago, was a barrier reef that ran north-to-south across what is now rural Collier and Lee counties, he said.

Nowadays, scientists call it the Tamiami formation, which dates back some 4 million years.

That's probably where the fossil came from but it might have come from younger sediments nearer the surface, Savarese said.

The object looks to Savarese like the top of a stony coral skeleton that, when it was living, supported tentacle-bearing soft parts, he said.

Maria said she plans to keep trying to pin down exactly what the girls discovered.

She keeps it wrapped in paper towels and sealed in a plastic freezer bag.

For now, it is a treasure.
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  #5  
Old 02/12/2005, 08:27 AM
MiddletonMark MiddletonMark is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by dinoman
[B4my in a geological time scale is mearly a blink of an eye. If I remember right "coral reefs" have been on earth for in the order of 300?-400?my. [/B]
You're right.

The first scleractinian corals [stony/skeleton-building corals] comes from the Triassic [250-210 Million Years Ago]. While there have been a number of extinction events/etc in the meantime ... things like Acropora [as a family] have been around since the Jurassic [210-140 mya]. Very likely they may have looked different and been totally different species than anything we know - yet their roots are pretty deep.

----
It's an interesting story, I'll be keeping an eye out for more on it.

Thanks for posting it
  #6  
Old 02/12/2005, 09:48 AM
dc dc is offline
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That would be a fun treasure to find!
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  #7  
Old 02/12/2005, 10:02 AM
Jeremy Blaze Jeremy Blaze is offline
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Actually, the first skeleton building corals were around much longer ago than that. 400 million years ago. The Devonion Age, or the Age of Fish.

I know this because I an sitting on one of the largest Devonion Fossil beds in the World, at The Falls of The Ohio State Park. We have lots of stony coral fossils, many look much like favias, favites, acroporas ,etc.
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  #8  
Old 02/12/2005, 10:25 AM
MiddletonMark MiddletonMark is offline
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True, I was talking about the corals in our tanks - I haven't been reading the geology recently, as was made evident [as was a need for coffee]

http://geology.er.usgs.gov/paleo/coralstable1.shtml

Anyway, here's a couple cool links on such topics I just dug up:
http://geology.er.usgs.gov/paleo/corals.shtml
http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/cnidaria/cnidariafr.html

It's pretty cool stuff, there's so much of Earth's early history written there. It's amazing how much corals have re-taught me about biology, evolution, geology, chemistry ... all via other `dumb hobbiests'
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  #9  
Old 02/12/2005, 10:38 AM
Jeremy Blaze Jeremy Blaze is offline
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heres a good site for info, www.fallsoftheohio.org

Sameless plug
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