Fossil Samara

The only plant fossil I ever found, in Pinole California a few years ago. An impression of a samara from some unidentified kind of tree.

  • Ron Sullivan PRO 5y

  • Jafafa Hots 5y

    so what's the diagnosis?
  • Ron Sullivan PRO 5y

    I dunno, the venation pattern's funny for a plant. I wonder if it's a little shell.
  • Jafafa Hots 5y

    Oh sure, burst my bubble.
    But seriously, though it doesnt show in the pic, there was a very definite seed-like indentation where the ridges aren't... thicker at that end... and Chris thought it was a samara too.

    Could always go back and look for more I suppose.
  • Ron Sullivan PRO 5y

    Clearly I'm out of my depth. Mind if I share this with one of my contacts?
  • Peter Roopnarine PRO 5y

    Hey ron, at first glance I would say "maple seed"! But that pattern of concentric rings is very regular. What is the scale of it? And Pinole?! Interesting. I'll be back to work semi-regularly over the next few weeks, so we also try to arrange having you bring it by.
  • Ron Sullivan PRO 5y

    Peter, thank you! Especially for that generous offer. I, for one, would be delighted.

    I think it's about the right size for maple noses, as we used to call them back when this was alive. But IIRC the venation pattern would be more like leaf veins. I'll have to wait till the maples grow noses again, I guess.

    This belongs to Jafafa Hots; if you know where the thing is stashed, JF, we could all make a field trip to the Academy maybe late next month?

    We'll be out of town till 4/13. Gotta escape the damned mulberry pollen somehow. Kauai sounds far enough, no?
  • Jafafa Hots 5y

    Thanks Ron, you can share it with whoever you like.

    It's a bit smaller than the maple seeds we got in NY.
    I'm not 100% sure where it is. When I found it a few years back I left it with Chris and Becky. About 2 years ago when I came for a visit I looked for it to take a better photo, and found to my dismay that it had been chucked into the yard and broken in half, the more fun part now missing.

    The remaining half is quite possibly still kicking around in Becky's back yard... the color is distinctive so it would be easy to find if still there, I'll check next time I'm over there.
  • neonbluestreak 4y

    doesnt look like a plant to me...
    more like a shell
  • Peter Roopnarine PRO 4y

    It could be a shell, but the outline doesn't match anything that I've ever seen, and the ring pattern on it doesn't work for a shell's growth pattern.
  • Jafafa Hots 4y

    The thing that made me think it was a samara is that, though it's hard to see in this photo, one end of the object has a fatter, smoother part, much like the seed of a maple tree, the fatter part of the "helicopter."

    On the fossil that area was indented a bit more and smoother without the rings. It's barely noticeable in this pic but it's on the right hand side.
  • Jafafa Hots 4y

    Incidentally I can take anyone to the exact spot I found it at if they want to explore. But they'll have to drive!
  • Peter Roopnarine PRO 4y

    I'll take you up on that! Drop me a note on Flickr, and maybe we can arrange something?
  • Ron Sullivan PRO 4y

    Can we come too? We'll bring pie!
  • Jafafa Hots 4y

    Of course! Pie is always welcome!

    (Oh and you guys too!)
  • Ron Sullivan PRO 4y

    OK, Peter; now it's up to you.
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Uploaded on January 31, 2009
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