Saturday, December 14, 2013

Practical Identification: Fossils

The geology students had a good time identifying selected fossils from my collection.  Some specimens were tricky, and some required a very close examination.

Two young geologists examine a fossil shark tooth.

Everyone easily identified the fish.

They needed a hand lens to see the fossil gastropod shell embedded in limestone.

The ammonite was also an easy I. D.

Each sample was classified by fossil type and identified if possible.  The students drew each sample on the station sheet.

That shark tooth.

We didn't have any petrified wood, but I promised a photo.  Here, Trip examines a former log in Petrified Forest National Park.

Need some books for young fossil hunters?  Here are a few:

Or, get your own starter set, and set up a set of practical stations.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Strings of Elven Pearls

It was so foggy this morning!  Silent dew drops clung to everything--the perfect day to take some pictures.  Click on the photos to enlarge.

I tried to get a shot of this drop as it lenses the oak tree next door in a perfect upside-down image in miniature, but was annoyed to find this bit of string in the image.

Then I took a closer look.  It was covered with smaller drops.

And soon I saw that these fine filaments were everywhere.

Tiny strings of pearls, they seemed...

woven along the yew...

as though a tiny elf had strung them...

on each branch,  for Christmas.