www.esconi.org > Lone Star Quarry

Tetrapod Fossil Find

Tetrapod Fossil Find

Call it beginner’s luck. A ten (10) year old LaMoille boy was excited about going on his first field trip with the Earth Science Club of Northern Illinois (ESCONI), then he made an exciting discovery.

"I joined the club because I wanted to go on field trips with people who know more than I do" said Matthew Galloway, who has been collecting fossils since he was six (6).

During that first field trip with the club, he spotted a bone embedded in stone which turned out to be the most significant specimen found by 38 people searching for fossils in a LaSalle County quarry on June 4.

"This is the best thing I have found" said Matthew. The club’s field trip coordinator, Bealis Giddings of Mazon, told Matthew and Bruce Galloway the fossils was a leg bone from an amphibian known as a tetrapod.

Giddings has searched for fossils in upper Illinois River Valley quarries for ten (10) years.

"This is the biggest one I have seen. It is at least six times bigger than any I had seen," Giddings said.

Everyone involved in the field trip expressed appreciation to the quarry owners for giving them permission to look for fossils.

Bruce Galloway brought the fossil to the attention of Michael Philips, a geology instructor at Illinois Valley Community in Oglesby who took digital pictures of the fossil. He confirmed that the Galloways had found a tetrapod (a four-legged animal that looks like a mud puppy) from the Pennsylvanian Age (286-320 million years ago).

Philips e-mailed photos of the bone to Russ Jacobson, a geologist and paleontologist at the Illinois State Geological Survey in Champaign. "It is a nice specimen of a lower limb bone of a tetrapod", Jacobson said. "It may not tell us much about the species, but it is a record of another one".

http://www2.ivcc.edu/phillips/fossil/amphibian/amphibian.html


Lone Star Collecting

Lone Star Collecting

Don Auler, Jim Fairchild, and David Bergman.


Lone Star Collecting

Lone Star Collecting

Looking for that perfect find.


Parking

Parking

Here is a look back at the parking area.

Photo by: John Good


Overview of area

Overview of area

The collecting area is quite large.

Photo by: John Good


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #1

2008 Lonestar Quarry #1

LaSalle limestone provides abundant marine fossils.

photo by: Marie Angkuw


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #2

2008 Lonestar Quarry #2

Assembling before setting out to collect.

photo by: Marie Angkuw


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #3

2008 Lonestar Quarry #3

Many stones are small because of blasting and truck traffic.

photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #4

2008 Lonestar Quarry #4

Sharing a find.

photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #5

2008 Lonestar Quarry #5

Some fossils are just millimeters in width.

photo by: Marie Angkuw


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #6

2008 Lonestar Quarry #6

Taking a careful look.

photo by: Marie Angkuw


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #7

2008 Lonestar Quarry #7

For collecting the small ones, it helps to get close to the ground.


photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #8

2008 Lonestar Quarry #8

Dramatic late-summer skies over the parking area.

photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #9

2008 Lonestar Quarry #9

Collecting can be a solitary, meditative act.

photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #10

2008 Lonestar Quarry #10

Eroding Pennsylvanian Period limestone.

photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #11

2008 Lonestar Quarry #11

The quarry slope offers productive washes for fossils weathered from the matrix.


photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #12

2008 Lonestar Quarry #12

The quarry reveals a bowl-shaped limestone formation.

photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #13

2008 Lonestar Quarry #13

A lucky collector with a nautiloid and a shark's tooth.

photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #14

2008 Lonestar Quarry #14

Collecting in groups on the slope.

photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #15

2008 Lonestar Quarry #15

Everyone finds fossils in this rich site.

photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #16

2008 Lonestar Quarry #16

ESCONI members gather on a chilly morning before descending into the quarry.


photo by: Marie Angkuw


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #17

2008 Lonestar Quarry #17

A view of the road bisecting the quarry.

photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #18

2008 Lonestar Quarry #18

Concentrating on protecting the more delicate specimens.

photo by: Marie Angkuw


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #19

2008 Lonestar Quarry #19

Moving up a wash area.

photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #20

2008 Lonestar Quarry #20

Three treasures: a crinoid calyx, a large Juresania brachiopod, and a rare nautiloid.


photo by: Marie Angkuw


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #21

2008 Lonestar Quarry #21

Meandering about the slope.

photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #22

2008 Lonestar Quarry #22

Small plants surviving in the silt and gravel.

photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #23

2008 Lonestar Quarry #23

Fossils are everywhere: small and abundant brachiopods, horn coral, and crinoid pieces.


photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #24

2008 Lonestar Quarry #24

Assessing the finds of the day.

photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #25

2008 Lonestar Quarry #25

Sorting the treasure from collecting bags.

photo by: Andrew Young


2008 Lonestar Quarry  #26

2008 Lonestar Quarry #26

A good haul: Spirifer and Juresania brachiopods, gastropods, crinoid stems and calyx, and several nautiloids.


photo by: Andrew Young