Yesterday we spent the day prospecting a square mile of sheep pasture and found only a few fruitful peaks spewing microfossil specimens (turtle/croc scutes, teeth, toe bones and verts). Here is a pile of Champsosaur verts that I found atop a mudstone butte. Champsosaurs were common late Cretaceous animals looking much like crocodiles; they do not exist today.
Near the end of the day, we found ourselves in the far corner of the section facing an ominous thunderstorm. We barely made it back to the car before it began to torrentially rain. Yesterday was also the last day for two of our team members, Alana and Alan Gishlick. Here is a group photo of the first wave of Peabody fossil hunters. From left: Laura, Ariel, Alec, Jacob, Alec, Alana, Ali(me) and Walter. That's a mouthful! Today, we welcome Peabody Associate Curator of Mammalogy, Eric Sargis who is interested in early-Paleocene-mammal fossils.