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Fossil Hunting on the Peace River

Today I met the Sarasota Kayak Group at the Gardner boat ramp off of Hwy 17 (about 9.5 miles south of Zolfo Springs.-which is a 1hr 22 min drive east from here). This area is known as a great spot to find fossils and sharks teeth. I took my handy veggie steamer as a strainer-and Carol, a member of our group, lent me a little shovel/spade! We brought our kayaks too- but the river was so low that we portaged quite a bit--no problem in my easy to get in and out of sit-on-top kayak, and the river bottom was nice and sandy. There were loads of paleo students downstream on their yearly fossil event - they had camped in the area. I found a pretty good spot and got 20 teeth- two of which were snaggletooth teeth and measure about 3/4 " in height! Fossil hunting is like gambling---its hard to quit-especially when you find a few....you say--"I will leave after I find just one more"!

I dig-it!

I wish someone would identify the types I found...!

There are two reasons that marine and land fossils are found in the Peace River.  First, this part of Florida experienced numerous cycles of being land versus being submerged in sea water.  Second, this area currently has a river running through past deposits which include intermixed marine and land fossils.  So, it's quite common to find marine fossils (e.g. shark teeth) in the same area as a land fossils (e.g. horse teeth).
The geologic formation is likely the Hawthorn Group, Peace River Formation, Bone Valley Member which ranges in age from Miocene to Pliocene.


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(Deleted comment)
Apr. 27th, 2009 11:26 am (UTC)
I had never done it before---it was really more fun once we got a few!
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