Here is a story for you.
Recently the foreman of an excavating crew came to me with some peculiar looking stuff. Each piece rather small and appeared to be some kinda’ nugget-looking rock with bumps all over it and mucky with red clay. He jokingly said he thought it was clumps of fossilized “Dino Poop”.
The Ozark Mountains used to be deep under the ocean. My first impression was that it might possibly be some kind of volcanic lava which solidified into strange formations when it came in contact with water and was carried here and deposited in a ‘pocket’ by ocean currents millions of years ago then got buried in a sediment of red clay. The excavator said he had never seen anything like ’em in all the years he had been working in the Ozarks. Quite frankly, neither had I.
Washing up the batch revealed that each piece was a thick cluster of round, wafer-like crinoid segments cemented together somehow in a thin matrix (surrounding substance) of sedimentary stone. Crinoids are segmented oceanic animals in the same class as starfish and sea urchins, but somewhat resemble flowers growing on branched stems.
The fossilized remains of crinoids are very common here and are estimated by geologists to be 500 million years ago (give or take 50 million years).
They are found individually as single segments or strings of segments bonded together. They are also common as encrustations on gray limestone and red sandstone as well as imbedded in certain strata of these types of sedimentary rock.
Perhaps the geologists among our viewers can supply some information as to how these clusters were formed. D****d if I know. Call them what you may, “Dino Poop” or “Crinoid Cluster Nuggets”, I acquired a medium moving box about half full of them. All there was in the ‘pocket’. Many of them are fairly small, but some of them will more than fill your palm. The largest one only weighs 26 ounces (one pound, ten ounces). Your guess is as good as mine. I dunno if any more will ever turn up.
What are they good for? Use your imagination. I put one amongst my collection of rocks and crystals. Another I carry in my pocket and use as a focal point for Objective Meditation. Some people (myself included) believe that fossils emit certain forms of energy as do many types of crystals. They might help and certainly won’t harm anyone if used as an adjunct to Holistic Healing. Could be fashioned into pendulums - and jewelry, too. They are weird, but kinda’ nice to look at and the smooth ones have a comfortable, warmy feel in the hand. Yeah, something else. My “Dino Poop” has turned out to be quite a conversation piece. Get ’em while you can.
Crinoids; Crinoid Cluster Nuggets; Dino Poop
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