National Fossil Day

The Oxnard Gem & Mineral Society is an official National Fossil Day Partner.

Heterostracans (“different shields”) were a group of primitive jawless fish from Death Valley which existed between the Early Silurian and the Late Devonian period when they became extinct (approximately 358 million years ago). The heterostracans were characterized by an external covering of bony armor plates and by having only one common gill opening on each side of the head region. These early fish lacked any paired or mid-line fins and in many cases developed extensions of the armor plates that were not flexible but helped provide control in the water.

badgeThe National Park Service and the American Geological Institute are partnering to host the annual National Fossil DayTM on October 11, 2017 during Earth Science Week.

National Fossil DayTM is a celebration organized to promote public awareness and stewardship of fossils, as well as to foster a greater appreciation of their scientific and educational value.

National Fossil DayTM Song

Ventura County is home to a wide range of fossils

Columbian Mammoth?

In September 2016, it was announced that the skull and tusks of “Larry” was discovered on Santa Rosa Island.  The find appears to be a young Columbian Mammoth.  Further research will be needed to confirm if it is a Pgmy, Columbian or something in between.  The nickname honors the discoverer, Peter Larramendy, and leading mammoth expert Larry Agenbroad.

Pygmy Mammoth

The most complete Pygmy Mammoth ever found, was discovered in 1994, on Santa Rosa Island.  A replica can be seen for free at the Channel Islands National Park Visitors Center.

“Emma” The Moorpark Mammoth

In April 2005, a Southern Mammoth fossil was discovered in Moorpark during the construction of new homes.  In the same location, parts of a Columbian Mammoth, Western horse, a large-headed llama, a rabbit, a kangaroo rat and other rodent ancestors were discovered.  A Mammoth Sculpture for Kids to Play on is a feature of the Mammoth Highlands Park in Moorpark.

Photos courtesy of WM Lyons Homes

The Oxnard Gem & Mineral Society organizes local Field Trips to collect clam shells and whale fossils.

Ventura County Clams

Ventura County Clams

 

As part of the Tri-County Education Committee, we have donated two general Fossil Boxes to the Ventura County Library System.  These  Boxes are available for Educators to check out.

Tourmaline

 

We will be celebrating National Fossil Day, with Junior Paleontologist activities at our Annual Gem & Mineral Show on November 18th & 19th, 2017.