Rocky Point 10-2012

Twelve club members showed up with beautiful weather for the Fall trip to Rocky Point. Unfortunately the quarry had scheduled a shot (dynamite blast) at 12:30 so we were restricted in hunting area until the shot went off. Some very nice and unusual specimens were found once we had a larger area to hunt. Unfortunately the pit area was off limits due to quarry activity. Michael and Kenneth Troutman left shortly after lunch and didn't have the larger hunting available after the shot. I did see them working hard on a large piece of matrix trying to extract what appeared to be bone! Peale Chuang found several nice echinoids, shells, coral and bryozoa. Ralph Brinton and his son Ralph Jr. found several nice Hardouinia mortonis (Echinoid) and Ralph Jr. found a belemite! The first I've seen come out of Rocky Point. Mark Kearns found some nice Eocene echinoids as well as several Hardouinia mortonis. Todd Powers had a great day with four H. kellumi, two Nebrius thielensis (nurse shark), one posterior auriculatus and several H. mortonis echinoids! Earl Guertin found four H. mortonis, several small Eocene shark teeth and a small sand dollar.  Some interesting and unusual specimens were also found on this trip. Tracey Mayo not only found four H. mortonis but a section of Cretaceous nautiloid. These Cretaceous nautiloids were huge compared to the smaller Eocene cousins. Tracey also found a very rare echinoid in Cretaceous material. It appears to be a H. mortonis but with a very wide periproct – possibly a H. priscus! Very unusual! Libby Smalley not only found a nice H. kellumi but a perfect crab carapace (possible Avitelmessus grapsoideus) and two Agassizia sp.? (echinoids). Linda McCall found two H. kellumi, some unusual Cretaceous oysters, and the most unusual find of the day: a H. mortonis with spines!!! The spines were very fine and hairlike – much longer than I would expect on such a little echinoid. This is the first for me to ever see. A great find!  The club wants to thank Doug Pope and Martin Marietta for the opportunity to hunt their quarry. We understand the risk they take to let groups hunt their quarry and appreciate the opportunity.