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Pip
Hello all

I'm new to fossil hunting (after many years of general interest) and recently spent a few days in Shropshire going twice to the lovely Wenlock Quarry. For anyone interested in going there, the Withies campsite is only about a minute's drive from the National Trust car park where the walk to the quarry begins.

I saw lots of lovely fossils and brought a few stones home. However the best find was what is, I think (but please correct me if I'm wrong), the crinoid calyx in the attached photos. I removed most of the soft mud after I got home and hope I've made a reasonal job.

DSC05120_reduced.jpg  DSC05121_reduced.jpg  DSC05122_reduced.jpg  DSC05123_reduced.jpg  DSC05124_reduced.jpg 

Also, whilst not a find as such, when walking from the Withies campsite along the bridle path named Blakeway Hollow I came across a tiny quarry, complete with the remains of a lime kiln. ( SO 60911 99625 ) and have attached a few photos. Apologies for the lack of focus on the picture of the kiln entrance roof, but I thought it worth including nevertheless.

Kiln quarry1.jpg  Kiln quarry2.jpg  Kiln1.jpg  Kiln2.jpg  Kiln3.jpg 

Cheers
Pip
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Dirty Pete
Hi Pip,
Looks like a great place. Your crinoid calyx is very odd, I thought they were made up of plates. That looks like some kind of branching coral, but I could be wrong.

Pete
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Anonymous
Thanks Pete. That would make sense as I saw a lot of coral elsewhere in the quarry.
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prep01
Hi Pip, lovely little block with not only the branching coral but shell fragments, part of a ?gastropod (worm - like ) and bryozoans (delicate surface structures)
Colin Huller
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Gerald Gibson
Hello Pip:

Your specimens are outstanding!  I'm pretty certain you have a mixture of crinoid column parts and at least two species of Bryozoans. Please check out my comments in the attached markup of one of your photos and drawings I found online.  

---- Gerald Click image for larger version - Name: UK Fossils.jpg, Views: 20, Size: 226.72 KB
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Dirty Pete
Must admit I've never seen a branching coral from the Wenlock quite like that before. Could it be the base of a crinoid (holdfast)?

Pete
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prep01
Pete - I'm still researching this, but need a paper from somewhere I can't access it atm. You may be correct, but it don't 'alf look like septa round the top!
Colin Huller
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Pip
Hello Pip:

Your specimens are outstanding!  I'm pretty certain you have a mixture of crinoid column parts and at least two species of Bryozoans. Please check out my comments in the attached markup of one of your photos and drawings I found online.  

---- Gerald


Thanks Gerald! And thank you for image showing what the bryozoans are. I think it was a lucky find which cleaned up very nicely. Interesting to see the debate around crinoid vs coral continuing...
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Dirty Pete
Hi Colin,
Yes this one's been bugging me for a while, the five fold arms/branches/roots suggest echinodermata  . Been trawling the net and found this
A Silurian Eucalyptocrinites holdfast with coral like 'septa'. 
2Eucalyptocrinites-roots-L.jpg 
Cheers
Pete
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Gerald Gibson
Pete and Pip:

Compare one of Pip's photos with the drawing. This is very likely a typical crinoid arboreal cup with branching arms--an excellent specimen!

---- Gerald Click image for larger version - Name: UK Fossils 2.jpg, Views: 11, Size: 143.14 KB
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Dirty Pete
Hi Gerald,
Correct me if I'm wrong but I thought the calyx/cup was made up of interconnected plates which don't seem to be present in Pips excellent specimen. The 5 branches seem to grow out of a columnal which makes me think it's the other end of the animal.
Cheers
Pete
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Gerald Gibson
Dirty Pete:

If you look at the drawing (taken from a scientific journal) you will note that the bottom part (the holdfast) is irregular whereas the top portion (the arboreal cup) is similar to Pip's photo.  I see interconnected plates in both the drawing and the photo.  If that photo doesn't show a crinoid's arboreal cup branching out, I would be greatly surprised.  However, I'm not a paleontologist, just a collector.  My own collection of crinoid body parts doesn't make me an expert, but I'm almost certain I am correct.
---- Gerald Click image for larger version - Name: UK Fossils 3.jpg, Views: 15, Size: 170.84 KB
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Dirty Pete
Hi again Gerald,
I'm trying very hard to see these interconnecting plates in Pips photo but am failing miserably. I'm expecting to see plates something like this:
Screenshot (6).png 
Maybe this crinoid isn't typical, is the calyx/cup obscured by the arms? I'm very confused now....  

Cheers
Pete

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CurtKnap
It's definitely not a crinoid calyx, but a nice example of a budding coral, most likely Entelophyllum sp. Have a look at the 'Silurian corals' thread in British Fossils (scroll down this page https://www.discussfossils.com/post?id=8090604&trail=150.)
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Dirty Pete
Hallelujah!!
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prep01
Ooooo, aaaaah thanks Curt (I was right all along - wasn't I)?
Colin Huller
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CurtKnap
I would say so, Colin, but it was an interesting debate, which is what this forum is really about.
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Pip
This has been fascinating and I have learnt a great deal from you all. Thank you very much for all your responses. I hope I can keep posting finds that provoke so much discussion!😁
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Gerald Gibson
Pete, Pip, and Curt:

I am greatly impressed with the feedback!  The samples provided by Pip and Curt are excellent.  It's no wonder that some of the great names in paleontology and geology have come out of the British Isles!

Cheers! ---- Gerald
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