• "Celebrating the Richness of Paleontology through Fossil Hunting"
  • TRIARTHRUS TRILOBITE HUNT - NEW YORK


Triarthrus Fossil Hunt


Short video of the Triarthus trilobite fossil Hunt.


The stream bed with the Ordovician Utica shale exposed. This shale contains Triarthrus Trilobites.

The stream bed with the Ordovician Utica shale exposed. This shale contains Triarthrus Trilobites.



Fossil Hunting for Triarthus Trilobites in the Utica Shale of Central New York


A few of us fossil nuts, including Larry of DVPS, made our way to the Ordovician Utica shale of Central New York in search of Triarthrus trilobites.

Triarthrus are plain looking trilobites that lived on the ocean floor in deep water and anoxic (low oxygen) conditions. Because of the low oxygen and deep water environment, the diversity of life in this shale is low. Other life includes deep water graptolites, some cephalopods, and a few gastropods.

The Utica shale is a dark grey shale found along many creek beds throughout central New York. The part of the Utica shale we collected in is called the Dolgeville Formation. This shale splits into thin layers. Some layers contain preserved fossils. Often the fossils are graptolites and heads of Triarthus trilobites that have accumulated by the slow deepwater currents. Sometimes a whole Triarthrus can be found. This was our goal, to find complete Triarthrus trilobites. Usually a person can find about 1 Triathrus trilobite ever hour or so of searching. We explored a couple creeks in the area that exposes the Utica shale, then on the way back, we took a side trip to Niagara Falls to see the massive Niagrara Escarpment.

To learn more about Triarthrus trilobites, including images of soft body preservation, head over to the Triarthus Gallery.


Searching the Utica shale exposed along a creek for Triarthrus trilobites

Searching the Utica shale exposed along a creek for Triarthrus trilobites.






Fossils Found from the Trilobite Fossil Hunt



A complete Triarthrus trilobite fossil

A complete Triarthrus trilobite fossil



A smaller complete Triarthrus trilobite fossil along with a few partials.  This is both the posative and negative of the fossil.

A smaller complete Triarthrus trilobite fossil along with a few partials. This is both the posative and negative of the fossil.



These are two additional Triarthrus trilobite fossils found on the dark grey Utica shale.

These are two additional Triarthrus trilobite fossils found on the dark grey Utica shale.



These are Graptolite fossils. They look like tiny arrows.  These lived in the deep water with the Triarthrus trilobites.

These are Graptolite fossils. They look like tiny arrows. These lived in the deep water with the Triarthrus trilobites. An interesting fact is when they fossilized, they aligned in the direction of the paleocurrents. By studying their orientation across a large number of sample areas, one can deteermine the paleocurrents in the area.



This is a large straight shelled nautiloid which is a type of cephalopod. Also visible is the negative of a Triarthrus trilobite and a smaller cephalopod.

This is a large straight shelled nautiloid which is a type of cephalopod. Also visible is the negative of a Triarthrus trilobite and a smaller cephalopod.



This is a smaller straight shelled nautiloid.

This is a smaller straight shelled nautiloid.



View of Niagara Falls.

Niagara Falls is the largest of over 20 waterfalls flowing over the Niagara Escarpment. This escarpment runs across the Great Lakes region for approximately 1000 miles.
This is Horseshoe Falls on the Canadian side of the escarpment.



Bridal Veil Falls on the American side of the Niagara Escarpment.

Bridal Veil Falls on the American side of the Niagara Escarpment.




Recommended Books and Fossils:




Trilobites: Common Trilobites of North America (A NatureGuide Book)
by Jasper Burns, 2000

Jasper Burns has some great illustrated fossil guide books. This one is on the Trilobites of North America. It has detailed illustrations of 41 species of North American trilobites and includes information about trilobite paleobiology, vision, growth, extinction, and much more! It's a nice little resource book for those interested in North American trilobites. It's also a very inexpensive book. Check it out!




The Trilobite Book: A Visual Journey
by Dr. Riccardo Levi-Setti, 2014

This is an updated (2014) hardcover (kindle available) of his famous 1994 book. It now has color images instead of black and white ones. The images are of prefectly prepared trilobites from all over the world. this book is geared toward the beginner and does not get overly technical. However, it's wonderful just to see the pictures and is a must for any trilobite enthusiast.



Trilobites for Sale:


Trilobites from Fossil Era
Trilobite fossils are some of the most beautiful and collectible fossils! There are countless species and they make beautiful display and conversation pieces. Common ones make very affordable for gifts to fossil and paleontology enthusiasts. Fossil Era has a huge selection of top quality trilobites from many states and countries. It's fun just to browse through the inventory and look at all the different types!




Popular Content

About the Author

Contact Us

To ask Questions about Paleontology, Fossil Identification, Image Use, or anything else, email us.

Fossilguy.com is very active on Facebook, you can also message us there!

We don't buy or sell fossils, so please don't email us asking about the value of a fossil or fossil purchases.


If you enjoy this site, Like our Website and Facebook Page:




Privacy Policy / Disclaimer


Back to the TOP of page

© 2000 - 2018 : All rights reserved

FOSSILGUY.COM

Fossilguy.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com