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Fossi Hunting around the Chesapeake Bay area

View of the Calvert Cliffs along the Chesapeake Bay.

View of the Calvert Cliffs along the Chesapeake Bay.

Summer Fossil Hunting in the Chesapeake Bay area.

Months and months ago, Paul of CHAPTours and I had a conversation similar to what follows:

"Would you like to help do a fossil presentation for some cub scouts this summer?? Asked Paul.

"How many?? I asked.

"A few hundred.? Replied Paul.

"Who will be helping?? I whimpered.

"Just me and hopefully you."

"Where at?" I asked in a quivering voice.

"Near Philadelphia." Was his reply (which is hundreds of miles from where I live).

I then ran the figures through my head and did the math:
A few hundred cub scouts + two fossil enthusiasts = death of two fossil enthusiasts.

After my lightning fast calculations, I told him in a commanding voice, "Yes, I will help!"

Now, why the heck would I do such a suicidal thing??? Well, bribery of course!!! See, Paul bribed me with a 4-day fossil trip to explore various spots along the bay, Potomac, and Patuxent Rivers with his small boat. How could any fossil nut pass that opportunity up?

So, months passed, and it was finally time to take the trip!

Thursday: The Cub Scouts

The Plan: Give a ~10 minute presentation on fossils and fossil sharks, then let them dig thier own fossils from a few truckloads of Pungo River sediments from Aurora, NC that Paul hauled up. Repeat this all day long.

The Cub scouts loved the presentations and loved digging for their own fossils. The day flew by, all kids were happy, and some found some great stuff, such as a pristine megalodon posterior, and a squalodon tooth. Also, most found at least pieces of megalodon teeth. All left happy and hopefully educated. I can’t wait to help out again.

Giving the ~10 minute fossil presentation presentation

Here, the scouts are searching some Pungo reject material from the PCS mine in NC for fossil shark teeth. Paul hauled 4 truckloads of this stuff up last collecting season!

Friday: The 1st day

Our first fossil stop was a private area near the Calvert cliffs with the St. Mary’s formation exposed. There is some neat stuff that one can find there, but we didn’t find much of anything that morning.

Our second stop was another spot only accessible by boat. As we pulled up, I suggested one of us go one north, and the other go south. I headed north and found almost nothing. Paul headed south, and made his best find of the trip, a beautiful 3 7/16" megalodon tooth. He also found a large 2 1/4" C. hastalis tooth.

Our third stop was another spot along the Calvert cliffs. We both found a few nice small teeth, including some nice hemmi’s, but that was about it.

This is the nice 3 7/8 inch Choptank megalodon that Paul found.

Saturday: The 2nd day

On Saturday day we planned to boat down the Potomac river and hit a few Paleocene spots and a bizzare spot with Paleocene, Eocene, Miocene, and maybe Oligocene, and possibly Pliocene all exposed at once (It's a VERY confusing place).

Sat morning, we awoke, met up with a local, Paleoscan, who has a place along the cliffs. He also has an awesome custom boat. It has a sleek hull and a foreword facing row system, making it a relatively fast boat. The name: "Squalicorax."

Anyhow, no one did terribly well at the Paleocene spots along the Potomac, we all had a dozen or so small sand tiger shark teeth, and Paul found some small crocodile teeth.

After the Paleocene spots were well searched, we headed to a place where one can find intermediary teeth. These teeth are interesting. They are a cross between an otodus tooth and an auriculatus tooth. They have the shape of an otodus, but the root is similar to an auriculatus, and the wild thing is that only half their blade is serrated. These teeth are not flukes, they can regularly be found at this spot… Evolution in action! Anyhow, no one found one this day.. I’ll have to return there though! I must find one of these transitional teeth!

Paleoscans awesome Squalicorax boat.

Here is Paul and Paleoscan a spot along the Potomac.

These are some of the transitional teeth that Paleoscan found. These are apparently part otodus and part auriculatus. This picture is a little blurry, but the serrations only go 1/2 way up the blade, and they are not pathological!

Sunday: The 3rd day

we awoke and made a bee line toward the Clavert Cliffs. There, Paul found 2 more meg/chubutensis teeth. A kayaker who pulled up in front of us also found a nice chubutensis tooth. I found only a fragment of a meg tooth. We both found allot of nice smaller teeth, such as C. hastalis, hemmi's, etc.. Also, I came out with a beat up vert in matrix and Paul found a 2-foot section of baleen whale jaw. We both left happy.

Since so many meg teeth were found at this spot, we decided to go back to it for the 2nd low tide. So that afternoon, we picked up Paleoscan and headed back to this spot. Once there, Paleoscan found a small (~2"), but pristine meg tooth, and I finally found 2 meg teeth, they were only 1 7/8" and 1/2", but I was happy. I also found a beautiful cow shark tooth. Everyone left with some nice stuff.

That night, we were treated to a cookout at Paleoscans place. Thank you! Awesome EGG cooker!

These are two of my better finds at this Calvert Cliff spot.

These are two of my better finds at this Calvert Cliff spot.

Here are some of Pauls better finds from the trip.

Here are some of my fossil finds from the trip.

Recommended Books and Fossils:

Shark Tooth Hunting on the Carolina Coast
By: Ashley Oliphant, 2015
A guide on how to find and identify fossil shark teeth on the North and South Carolina beaches. It also has an easy to use section for shark teeth identification. If you want to find shark teeth in the Carolinas, read this book first!

Get Your Very Own Megalodon Tooth:

These are Authentic Megalodon teeth sold by Fossil Era , a reputable fossil dealer (that I personally know) who turned his fossil passion into a business. His Megalodon teeth come in all sizes and prices, from small and inexpensive to large muesum quality teeth. Each tooth has a detailed descriptions and images that include its collecting location and formation. If you are looking for a megalodon tooth, browse through these selections!

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