Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Guanling Lagerstätte

One of the places I went to on my recent South China trip was the Guanling Lagerstätte. This is Late Triassic in age, about 220 million years old or so – so considerably younger than the rocks we normally look at. As is often the case in China, the fossil site has been made into a museum. There is a purpose-built building housing a lot of fossil material and a short walking trail around some of the outcrops. Some of the larger fossils (mostly ichthyosaurs) have been left in situ and had protective shelters built around them.

The photo shows slabs with lots of crinoids (sea lilies) on display in the museum. The crinoids are thought to have been attached to floating logs (although it’s only fair to say that this isn’t universally accepted, and the crinoids may have grown on sunken logs on the sea floor instead).

More photographs on flickr, showing marine reptiles, crinoids and their logs, and more of the museum displays.


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