22 Mar 2013

Two honking great big Gryphaea (devil's toenail fossils).

(Edit: hello to all from Whitby Sea Anglers. A longer welcome here.) Another unpromising day on the beach, 30 mph face-freezing SE winds making the prospect of wet-handed naturalizing uninviting:
The beach is in its winter clothes: the incessant gales have scoured away the sand that makes the place so inviting to the summer hordes. As a result, things not usually seen by visitors are on display: shingle, rocks, bits of shipwreck and fossils. Here an ammonite counterpart that any sharp-eyed young fossiler would fall on delightedly...

And here, in the centre, a Gryphaea. The scouring tides have meant that a lots of these Jurassic oysters have come to light: they're usually a rare find of Runswick Bay beach.
However, a little further down the beach, find of the day. Two big Gryphaea, which appear to have died together. Overwhelmed by a mudslide, died of some unknown Gryphaeaic ailment or eaten, part digested and vomited back by a small icthyosaur? Who knows. But these two specimens are fine additions to the collection, photographed here in situ and compared to the other, more usual-sized Gryphaea that have been found as a result of this 'spring' weather and tides:


Kester said...

Great to see you writing regularly about Runswick, I enjoy reading all the fossil posts too. I'm there every other week in the summer kayak fishing, it's really a special place. Quite we come ashore when the fishing's slow, and have a little hunt for fossils with our sandwiches. Great spot!

Steve said...

Hi Peter
Great Blog - we met you this weekend at the hotel and what a gold mine of information and pleasure it was to listen to you. Please check out our 'bone' find and let us know your opinion.
Steve and Elaine

Peter McGrath said...

Steve checked it out, I think you might be right but it needs more careful inspection. Hope to see you soon.

Anonymous said...

Yesterday at Runswick Bay my older son found a small grey stony nodule in the loose rocks, a bit bigger than a golf ball but smaller than a tennis ball. Do you think it could be interesting? We can try sending a photo later.

R Hunt

Peter McGrath said...

Yes! Send a photo through the email link on the blog. Peter.