Saturday, August 23, 2008

Utah Trilobite Fossils

There are over 15,000 species of trilobites. Many collectors and experts believe Utah is home to as many as 600 of those species. An individual species can be described from a single trilobite or even a part of a trilobite.

The fun of trilobites is that everyone recognizes them. We like to say that they are 350,000,000 year old roaches, but they are actually ancestors of the Horseshoe Crab.

Utah trilobites range in size from less than 1/8 inch to a whopping 12+ inches. In recent years some very rare trilobites (olinoides sp.) were discovered in the Little Drum Mountains that exceed 12 inches.

At our favorite collecting site (A New Dig) there are several species including: Elrathia kingi, Modocia typicallus, Altiocculus, Peronopsis, Alokistocare, Agnostus, Asaphiscus wheeleri, and more.

Other fossils found in the Utah trilobite beds include corals, sponges, Gogia sp. (Sea lily flower head), Chancelloria (Jelly Fish), several different brachiopods, worm tracks, trilobite tracks, star fish, jelly fish, and more.

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