Collecting Suggestions and Specimen Preparation

mineral mining collector

One of the more difficult tasks in mineral collecting is properly preparing and trimming good specimens. Although many of the complete Brachiopods, from this locality, will have partially to completely geodized cavities, not every specimen can be saved. However, there are a few ways the collector can improve the percentage of specimens preserved.

First, examine the Brachiopod for any holes. If there is a visible hole, one should examine the interior of the geodized brachiopod to see if there are any crystallized areas to avoid trimming.

Second, carefully inspect the fossil for any cracks. If the specimen is cracked in any way, it is likely that this will be the first place the brachiopod will break open. If the brachiopod is hollow, attempting to break it a different direction will likely cause additional cracks and holes to develop.

Third, if there are no cracks and no holes, try to imagine which way the specimen would look best if it were opened. The careful collector will try to preserve the largest opening with the most complete crystals. Remember to tap very lightly when trimming or opening. Thin shelled Calcite Geodized Brachiopods break extremely easy.

By tapping lightly, the collector can notice the instance a crack begins to develop. Once a crack develops, the collector should try to pry open the geodized fossil instead of continuing to hit. This will help to preserve the crystals on the inside, while continuing to hit may crush the entire cavity. Finally, when collecting keep an eye out for previously broken geodized brachiopods.

Occasionally, these can be cleaned to be nice specimens. Also, previously broken specimens may indicate where a zone of geodized brachiopods may occur. The most sure way to obtain good specimens is to collect numerous complete brachiopods.

Calcite

1st and 2nd generation Calcite in Geodized Platestrophia Brachiopod

Collecting Status, Tips and Collector Responsibility

Current Ohio law permits roadside collecting on any rural, unposted State Route or US Highway, provided that collecting activities do not, in any way, interfere with normal and safe travel. All of the localities listed in this article are currently open to fossil and mineral collectors. Collecting is absolutely prohibited, at any time, along any Interstate or limited access highway.

Collecting is also not permitted in any area marked no standing, no parking or no stopping. Collectors in any of these areas may be arrested and charged with trespassing. Collectors should keep a few things in mind before visiting any roadside locality. First, always wear gloves and sturdy shoes. Snakes, including the timber rattler and copperhead, are frequently seen at road cut localities throughout the state. Second, keep an eye on all moving vehicles.

Park your vehicle as far away from the edge of the road as safely possible and in sight of the collecting area. The rule of thumb is 5 feet or more away from the edge of the road. This is possible at all of the localities listed in this article. Road cuts may be extremely slippery and unsafe when wet. The most important thing one must remember is to use common sense at all times, when collecting. Unsafe and inappropriate collecting habits can be cause for arrest at any location.

Finally, make sure you take all equipment and refuse, leaving only your tracks. In the past, collecting areas have been closed due to inconsiderate and disrespectful visitors. Collectors should consider themselves personally responsible for maintaining the access and availability of collecting localities.