It’s Florida shark teeth time!

Just got back from a visit with my good friend Jared in southern Florida. He and I have enjoyed learning about the fossil shark teeth and other bone being found in various places around the state. He’s gone all in and is learning lots about where and how to find these buried treasures.

This time I didn’t wade in a river with active alligators; instead we searched through exposed sandy matrix that came from a known deposit called the Bone Valley Formation. This formation is famous for the vibrant colors and variety of shark teeth it is hiding. Our finds are approximately 10-12 million years old.

We searched through piles and piles of matrix and found quite a few shark teeth as well as some bone fragments (not from sharks) and some vertebra as well as some other animals’ remains like burr fish mouth plates and ray teeth. Fun. We didn’t find the big megalodon teeth that all are looking for but we came up with a nice variety of shark species and assorted other things. Was a beautiful sunny day, not too hot and not humid – just great.

I’m sifting the sandy, clay matrix through some chicken wire screen to capture the teeth. They are sneaky and can be hard to find
Typical matrix we were going through searching for buried treasures

My finds including shark teeth, burr fish mouth plates and ray teeth along with other bone fragments.

More of our finds
Another person (not me!) came up with this cool megalodon shark tooth – it’s a pretty big one, very cool.

Jared has gotten into scuba to be able to dive in fairly shallow waters in the gulf where fossilized shark teeth are known to make an appearance. He’s encouraging me to join in on this new adventure and way to expand our horizons for fossil searching. I was reluctant but suited up and experimented in his pool under his good guidance just to get a feel for what it’s like to breathe through a regulator under water, clear your mask while under and move about and adjust your gear to achieve “neutral buoyancy.” I got into it and very quickly adjusted to the sensation of breathing under water (resisting the self preservation urge to get out of the water!) and moving about with the full wet suit, boots, fins, and air tank. I think I’d like to do it and work to get certified to be able to dive. I have loved snorkeling when in beautiful waters with reefs and fish about, this would be going the next step to be able to stay under instead of swimming at the top and only diving as long as I can hold my breath. I may be into it! No photos exist to show me fully geared up much to my great pleasure. I stand corrected – here’s one of both of us in the pool, Jared’s nearest and I’m a bit submerged beyond him.

Wasn’t all digging for fossils. Went out boating in the gulf and found these two friendly fellows swimming near us.
Stayed away from these Florida residents this time. Jet black, eyes open and ominous looking alligators could be seen in roadside ditches all over the place.
Sunset over the Gulf of Mexico from the Florida coastline.