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Friends in Low Places   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
Did BRFC go country? Maybe we did for a day, but since we are all about the teeth that’s no problem…. Naturally, I will have convolute some word, song or a combination thereof….Blame it all on my paleo roots, I showed up in boots, and scored some serrated treasures….I wasn’t the only to rack, so we had to celebrate with Mexican taste-bud pleasures…OK, enough of that I suppose. This trip turned out to reunite three of the four original BRFC-ers as ThaDude joined in for an old school hunt. Rumor h...
Digging up an old trip from last year   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

This is a trip from last year in November. In this trip report, I was searching for new spots and came across a pond that was recently finished. I combed the fields of dirt from the pond and noticed that there weren’t any phosphate pebbles, which is what fossil hunters generally search for when looking for new fossil sites to collect in SC. I was about to call it quits and leave until I noticed a very small shark tooth fragment that ...

Cypress Gardens   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
There is a FOSSIL EXPO this weekend at Cypress Gardens from 10-16:00. It looks to be a good time....
Totally out in the open....   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
Been busy during this week especially with the Christmas holiday so I hadn't posted my finds from my hunt I went on last Sunday. It was a nice day, but cold, but a fellow fossil buddy of mine wanted to scout a few new areas as well as check on a few other spots that we knew about. We started out walking a few smaller creeks, but with just a few smaller teeth being found with the exception of a cool stingray barb I came across....we headed to another area which might yield some bigger teeth. With...
A great weekend for toothn..   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I was planning on looking for new spots today so I headed out with the hopes of finding a spot with potential to hunt for teeth. After scouting a few ditches and finding a few broken pieces I walked down an embankment and started looking around the bottom. I found a few hemipristis and some broken and heavily worn teeth, but nothing spectacular. I was out of water fast as it was hot and humid which is of course normal for SC so I decided to head back. I saw an Angustiden sticking out of the side...
superhero benedeni!   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
So me and my friend megamouth decided to go toothin Thursday since it had been raining the past few days. We went to my favorite creek and were optimistic about the trip. About a third way into the trip i found my first ever benedeni and almost peed my pants. I took it out of the water and showed it to megamouth and while he was looking at it i found a nice 2 in mako about a foot from where i found the benedeni. The benedeni measures 1 5/8 in and it was perfect. It had a sharp tip. The bes...
Why did I have to leave   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
great finds...
Schooled by my Star Pupil   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

My son and I visited an old faithful fossil hunting spot in Summerville SC. Like most spots it used to be better than it is now but still we went because we thought we could find some nice smaller teeth from the Ashley formation which is exposed all over the place there.

The best method I have for hunting the spot is to use a clear bottom bucket to see through the water ripples to the bottom. My son soon tired of the tediousness of it all and walked on ahead scannin...

the great day   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
i had a great day...
Happy Birthday to me...   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
After celebrating my birthday the day before I headed out in anticipation the next day to a spot I go to known for smaller rare teeth. I know the odds are not ever in my favor for big teeth, but I will take a rare tooth over a big ugly one any day. I ended up hunting for about 2 hours, but I came away with two rare Giant Threshers(one nice principle tooth at over an inch and the other a large one measuring at 1-9/16 inches) I found 4 broken Benedinis and three other incomplete Giant Thresher tee...
Following a dirt path leading to Carcharocles.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I discovered this spot about a year ago and never came back to investigate it until now. I thought the place was done because trees are growing on the outside of the banks. This time I decided to get down into the ditch and walk around. I came across an area where layer was still being eroded out of the edges. There was also a spot where gravel was piled up in the middle. This is where I found most of my teeth. I also found this cool looking fish bone. I think it might be the beak from a marlin....
More rain means more fun !   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
Rain, rain, and more rain ! That has been the story as of late and it just means that the lowcountry has turned into a fossil hunters paradise ...that is if you know where to go. Well I know of a few great places to find teeth here in SC and I decided to go somewhere else this time away from Summerville and try an old spot. Of course the teeth are not as colorful, but you have a pretty good chance of finding nice ones. It turned out to be a great choice. As soon as I arrived I spotted a huge roo...
Angustidens Nursery   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

Fossil hunting in the lowcountry of South Carolina has become a feast or famine kind of thing. We go a long time without having anyplace to go from having a handfull of places all at once. It's because we are entirely dependent on the rain now to erode fossils from their resting places. The past few days we've been pummelled by rainstorms, and I got the crazy idea to go check an old spot that I hadn't hunted in a year or more. All it took was the mention of the word &q...

A Sifting I will go...   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
A day off and nice weather...only one thing on my mind and that was "toothin" ! I packed up my stuff and was out the door. Upon arrival at a spot I consider a productive I decided to walk the area first to see if there was any fossil material setting out. I started finding tooth fragment after tooth fragment until I saw a rarity ! Setting completely out in the open not six feet from me was a Squalodon Canine. I immediately went over and picked it up. It was whole with just some tip wea...
Just a little rain and a little luck...a good combination !   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
Well after the Saturday hunt I was content with my finds for the weekend, but my friend wanted to hit some spots after the rain on Sunday. He somehow talked me into it. After the rain let up we were off and headed to another of my spots. Upon arrival I saw how much layer the rain had exposed and how many teeth were just lying around. Yes during the first 20 minutes all we both could find were broken teeth. My friend eventually found a nice hemipristis and then another. Then I found it !.... with...
Bringing a old toothing spot back to life.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

This past Saturday I went out to an old ditch that I haven’t hunted at in years. This part of the ditch is mostly all Ashley marl exposures. I was lucky enough to find a good area that wasn’t too overgrown by vegetation. After clearing off some over burden I hit a really good pocket of angys. I found many shamers and a few nice ones!

Bike Riding + Fishing = Rare Shark Tooth   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

This is a cool story. I went bike riding with my little brother to another neighborhood to go fishing in one of the ponds. The pond we were fishing at was dug and finished about four years ago. When I first checked this spot out the first few big ponds they dug never hit the layer so I never came back. Now this pond has been grassed over and houses are surrounding it.

 

Super Cooper Blooper   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

Ahh the Cooper river... Its loaded with fossil teeth just waiting to be picked up by anyone with enough nerve to dive to the bottom. Today was megamouth's first river dive, and in addition to teeth, I was on a mission to bring him back alive. We all arrived at the boat landing ready to go, but unfortunately RivrDigr had to make a slight 60 mile detour because he forgot his son's gear. While he exceeded the speed limit, the rest of us (da fossz, t$, young digr, megamouth, and myself)&...

Diving in the Cooper!   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

This dive was from a couple weeks ago during Rivrdigr Fest. I didn’t find any super heroes this dive. It was a different story for the rivrdigr though. He said he had only found one tooth the first dive and it happened to be a large 5 ½ inch meg! What a find and he said it was exposed on the bottom too. Congrats rivrdigr!

...
My Frirst Fossil Dive   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

On Tursday, the ditchweezil and I went to the river with rivrdigr, his kid, Da Fossz, and T$. After waiting for Da Fossz to arive after being late, we had to wait for rivrdigr for an hour and a half to go pick up his kid's gear because he forgot to load it in his truck.

We finnally got out on the river, and i was pumped.  I was so excited to do my firt actuall dive for fossils.  Me and the weezil went down at the same time and&...

Leatherback   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

Last November I took some friends from the Smithsonian to a local limestone quarry to collect Middle Eocene Santee Limestone whale fossils. While there I found a turtle skull and gave it to them. It was in a section of the quarry where I had recently found a large, intact piece of leatherback turtle shell. They sent back photos of the prepared skull. At an impressive 18cm in length it could be from the same species as the shell I had found. It will be described as a new speci...

A really nice crab   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

A few months ago I was collecting with a good friend and she found a large fossil crab in a large limestone boulder. After we excavated it I noticed part of a large claw about a foot away from the first crab. We excavated a second crab and I took both to my lad for preparation. They were both Marietta palmeri specimens. These are the largest crabs from the Eocene of South Carolina. From the largest claws I've collected I believe the carapace of this species could rea...

Beautiful Day at the Ditch   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

This is a trip from this past Sunday. The weather was warm and the sun was out and shining! I didn’t want to pass up this opportunity to hunt teeth and I’ve had the itch to go out and hunt for awhile. I went to the local ditch down the street in my neighborhood to dig up the spot where I found associated whale bones from a previous trip. I got down in the ditch and noticed how overgrown it is getting. There are trees growing out of t...

The Chandler Excursion   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

I decided to take a trip to the ditch down the street in my neighborhood. I went back to the same area of chandler that I dug from a previous trip where two angustidens were found. I started digging away and after an hour of digging still nothing. Then I start uncovering some whale bones and vertebrae.

A day on the Cooper with T$ and RivrDigr   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I went (came) down to SC for four days of RivrDigrFest07. The only day we spent on the Cooper River while i was down was with T$ and RivrDigr. Since we knew it was T$'s first dive there, we were certain to point out every gator on the banks, ever gator slide, and talk in details about every creepy thing he could encounter. Cruel or preparations - you decide ;) After an unfortunate day on the 'other' river the day before (see my other post), i was looking for redemption today. I snagged...
My First Dive in the Cooper   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

This was a cool day. I met up with RivRdigR and ScUbaPaUL to do some diving in the Cooper River. While we were gearing up RivRdigR caught me off guard and snapped a quick photo of me holding my pink flippers before I put them on. You may see the picture in a future post to come. ScUbaPaUL racked in the whole megs! RivRdigR had a lot of quantity and found a large shamer angy with tip, but with no cusps and beat up root. I ended up fin...

Chandler!   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

I was looking over the lack of high quality angys in my collection. I only have a small handful of really nice ones and I figured it’s time to try to expand the collection. The only place near by where I know I could have a good chance at finding a high quality angy was the ditch near my house. I hit up the chandler and after digging for some time I began to see a root, cusps, and enamel exposed. I was thinking score! Nope, it can’t ...

Oligocene Fossil Cleanup Crew   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

Yesterday, the weezling and I decided to make the most of a lazy summer Saturday afternoon in a squalid, overgrown, mosquito infested, snake ridden gold mine. We haven't hunted the ditch in over a year because honestly, its usually not worth the drive. There is a 100 foot section of an old ditch that cuts through some primo chander bridge and ashley formation. We've had some heavy rains lately, and we thought our chances might be good there.

We walked down into the d...

School is out!   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

Now that this semester is finally over I have a little more time to go hunting. I’m in the process of getting recertified for diving just to be on the safe side because the last time I took a dive was about four years ago. I’ll be diving in the rivers this summer real soon.

For this post I went to two different places in the past week. The first spot I went to...

Discovering a new spot with future potential   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
This is a trip from about a week ago. The whole weekend I spent some time driving around looking for new spots. The first day I found a new area, but the layer sucked and was only about three inches thick. The next day I came across another new developing area with finished ponds. It had just rained recently and I arrived a few hours before it would start to get dark. The area was surprisingly absent of foot prints. At this place it seems like every tooth above two inches was either mangled or d...
Watch your step.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
A few years back I was out at one of the local quarries with a few friends from Florida. We had been there a few hours when one of the guys let out a scream. We rushed over to where he was sitting on the side of a hill with something in his lap. He cleaned it off with a brush and we were stunned. It was the mandible from a walrus. I had found broken tusks there before from the Pliocene formation. But this was the largest walrus fossil I had heard of from this area. It was sent to the Smithsonian...
A gentle touch.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
One of the more common fossils from the Ashley and Chandler Bridge Formations is Billfish. I've collected hundreds of vertebrates over the years. Another common Billfish fossil is their rostrum. They tend to fossilize well because of their density. I've collected a few partial, articulated skeletons that will be published soon as new species. One specimen is unique in that it had the atlas vertebra. It actually has a ball on one end that fit's into the skull like a reptile. In 2001 I uncovered a...
Hidden beauty.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
A few years back a close friend gave me a trilobite. He had received a shipment of fossils from Morroco and had a large box of trilobites in various states of disrepair. They had been roughly chiseled out of the matrix enough for you to see that they were large trilobites. A large, enrolled one, caught my eye and he graciously gave it to me for free. It sat on a bench in my garage until recently when I ran out of projects to work on. I took it off of the shelf and used an air scribe to clean all...
Collect everything!   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
When I first started collecting for the local museum I asked the curator what he would like me to concentrate on. He replied "Everything". He explained that the museum wasn't there to just collect one of everything. He said that only through collecting multiple samples of the same thing could you start to find out about the variations within a species. He showed me examples of fossils that had been collected over a period of a hundred years. They were from the same species but there were var...
Ouch!   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I was attacked! It came out of nowhere and without warning drew blood. It should be put into a museum somewhere and locked up for life. As I cleaned a cup of Early Eocene material I reached in to break up the smaller clumps. I received a sharp pain in one of my fingers and instinctively pulled my hand out of the water. Stuck to my middle finger was a tiny shark tooth. It had waited millions of years to get it's last (I hope) meal. When I looked at it under the magnifier I was amazed that it had ...
Put on the coffee.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
It rained almost two inches last week so I thought it would be worth while checking out one of the local quarries. It's a limestone quarry that has exposed the Santee Limestone formation. There was a lot of new area exposed so I figured I could find some whale or turtle bones. I did find a shattered turtle scapula. But I found something even better than whale material. I found a block of limestone filled with fish skeletons. I've recovered some very nice articulated fish skeletons from the lo...
Neighborly love.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I like to collect fossil whales. Especially when there's a good chance that I'll find a new species. I've discovered six Middle Eocene, one Late Eocene, five Early Oligocene, and one Early Oligocene paratype whales. It's exciting to see an extinct animal that no person has ever seen before. I've discovered over 40 new species of animals to date. But the whales are by far the most interesting. This posting is about a whale that I found back in 1998. I had heard rumors that there was a deep dr...
The Forgotten Loot   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
The other day I was walking around my back porch looking for tools and on one of the shelves there was a bucket full of uncleaned fossils. From the looks of it they came from about four different locations and I found them about two years ago. They must have got misplaced and I just forgot about them because I usually always clean up the best finds from my trips as soon as I get home and I don’t clean the others until later....
Would you like to buy a bridge?   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
It's almost Christmas and I bet you're still rushing around trying to find that perfect gift for the fossil collector that has everything. But a word of caution. If you're thinking of purchasing a fossil for your favorite collector you should make sure that it's not a fake. During the last few years there has been a dramatic increase in fake fossils on the market. The Moroccan fossils are probably the first thing that comes to your mind. But the Chinese are catching up. Exciting new Chinese foss...
Pack rats.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
Is it just me? Or has anyone else out there noticed the lack of postings at this site recently. The truth is, winter months are hell on fossil collectors. Most of the good sites are covered with snow or the ground is frozen. The creeks are too cold for screening and it's next to impossible to hit the chisel with muffins on. And for the seventh year in a row Santa has refused to bring me the Ground Penetrating Radar kit I keep asking for. So collecting pails and shovels are put away until the spr...
Moldy fossils.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
It's invertebrate time again. I've spent a lot of time in the Santee Limestone. It's a Middle Eocene marine formation with a lot of macrofossils. Most of the time I'm looking for protocetids. But I can't pass up a good invertebrate when I see it. It takes a lot of work to clean them up. But sometimes the results are impressive. The original shell material rarely survives. What I usually find is casts. But occasionally I find the molds. When I come across a complete mold of a gastropod I sometime...
Where are all the teeth?   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
For a couple of days before Thanksgiving, the rains poured and my hopes for large serrated objects were greatly enhanced. Armed with clear buckets, the kids and I scoured the still flowing big ditch on the morning of Thanksgiving. We didn't see a soul and there were no footprints either. At the end of the hunt, our tooth pockets were all much lighter than they should have been. We we knew how much rain fell, so we were all a little bummed. With the passage of time and many excavators, the big di...
Try it! You'll like it!   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
In several of my postings I've mentioned donating your valuable fossils to museums. I've also mentioned that museums can provide casts as replacements. The truth is that most museums and scientific institutions don't have the facilities for casting. As skilled personnel retire they are rarely replaced due to tightening budgets. So most casting is farmed out to a very few facilities. In return for casting items for other museums these facilities retain the molds, and the rights, to sell other c...
They went that-a- way!   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
In my posting on 3 December I mentioned "Trace Fossils". Trace fossils are imprints or markings left behind by living organisms. They can be footprints, trails, burrowings or any type of mark. The trace fossils most collectors are familiar with are the footprints left by dinosaurs. Many trackways have been discovered that give us a picture into the living world of the dinosaurs. Measurements can be used to give us information on their locomotion. Walking, and running, speeds have been worked out...
Index fossils   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
One of the things I have to continuously learn about is Index fossils. Index fossils are species of plants, invertebrates, vertebrates, etc., that show up in specific geological formations. They are usually the most abundant fossil in that formation. Index fossils are invaluable when collecting in areas where fossils from several overlying formations have become mixed together. This occurs often where rivers, or streams, have washed out the banks and deposited several ...
Easy Picking's   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I'm adding a few more South Carolina fossil invertebrates for you invertebrate lovers. When people come into town, to collect fossils, they'll usually ask me to take them to anywhere they can collect shark teeth. Sometimes we end up in limestone quarries with the Santee Limestone formation. This hard limestone doesn't give up it's teeth without a fight! It requires a hammer, chisel, and a little patience. The teeth are few but there are thousands of marine invertebrate casts and molds. But to g...
Invertebrates RULE!   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I get E-mails accusing me of ignoring the "Invertebrates". So this ones for you spineless, good for nothing $^#@!* invertebrate lovers. I've spent a lot of time collecting in the Santee Limestone. This is a hard limestone consisting of mostly marine invertebrate macro fossils. Occasionally I come across nautiluses. Some are complete. Most are not. When they use explosives to mine, the individual chambers will be blown apart and scattered. The largest ones I've found have been at quarries loc...
The food chain.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
There have been a lot of trip reports posted about shark teeth at this site. But little mention has been made about another common fossil shark find. I'm talking about vertebrates. We've all seen them while collecting. And while most everyone picks them up, they usually get lost in the bottom of the fossil box. Most shark reference books have little information on vertebrates. That's because most shark vertebrates look the same. The great white sharks have a distinctive shape. But the rest ar...
Lots of glue.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I've previously posted reports on sirenians I've found from the Oligocene of South Carolina. But the record on South Carolina dugongs goes all the way back to the Late Eocene. I've been collecting these primitive dugong remains for years. Their ribs are a common find along with Basilosaurus and Durodon material. So it came as no surprise when I came across one in a local limestone quarry in 2003. I was at the quarry helping with a massive Pleistocene excavation. One evening I was returning t...
Keeping DW's Angy trend alive.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
After seeing the sweet angys that DW has been posting on the website lately. DW has inspired me to follow the trend and follow the trend I did.. even though my angy may not be as big as DW’s angys, but it’s still a nice find. I went to go check out a ditch that DW told me about, but I ended up finding another spot in the process and I found the ditch later on. It was a small clearing where a pond was recently dug, which had layer in it. The pond area was already walked over by someone else, but ...
Angy Shamage   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
We had a nice thunderstorm come through the other day. I felt it was my duty to be the first to scour the Big Ditch and collect all of the exposed fossils that crossed my path. Today, I was only able to hunt the sides of the ditch and I was unable to see the bottom because the creek was still stirred up from the recent rain. I did come across one little almost super hero quality angy that had a flawless blade with every little serration and perfect bourlette, but the back side of the root was s...
Fossil Hunting Down Memory Lane   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
A few days ago, we had a pretty decent rain and I got a gut feeling to go back to the big ditch near where I used to live. The water was crystal clear, but I was obviously not the first one to walk my previous favorite fossil hunting grounds. I found one nice one that reminded me of the great times I had at this spot over the years. Back when I worked at home before tha weEzlinG was born, I used to ride my bike down to that ditch three times a week and rack on a pretty regular basis. Before all ...
Close call!   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
This is another turtle from the Early Oligocene of South Carolina. Carolinachelys wilsoni. I recovered it from the marine Ashley Formation. They were the largest turtles on the East Coast during the Oligocene. Some shells measure over four feet long. But even their large size didn't protect them from shark attacks. The shell below has two deep shark tooth grooves on it's back. It survived this one. The shell had already grown back. These large turtles were coming ashore to lay eggs along the Sou...
Forest for the trees.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
Over the years I've taken hundreds of fossil collectors into the field. From the "first time collectors" to experienced paleontologists. After watching them for years I've made an interesting discovery. The best collectors are not always the most experienced, or educated, ones. It seems to be a natural ability. Some people seem to be able to pick out a fossil, even when it's the same color as the material it's in. Others will stare at the same spot and see nothing. I've found that people with ar...
Snack food   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
When this site started it focused on the fossil shark teeth of South Carolina. The area has a reputation for producing abundant meglodon teeth. And justly so! There has been a lot of research and speculation as to why. Using the modern Great White sharks as a model there's one thing for sure. There had to be a lot of food! To feed a 40 foot shark you need large prey. The obvious target of choice would be whales. Lots of meat and energy producing blubber. But another common food source were the a...
Ouch!   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
This is another one of my decapod specimens from the Middle Eocene, Santee Limestone, of South Carolina. It's from an undescribed species. The largest complete crab carapace I've found to date was 6 and a half inches wide. It had a 2 and a half inch right claw. This claw would have measured 5 inches. That would have made the carapace around 12 inches in diameter. Large pieces of carapace, and another 4 inch claw, were the only other specimens found that are from the same species. Something this ...
DUMMY! DUMMY! DUMMY!   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
This posting is not about finding giant teeth or claws. It's about leaves. It's about the area of paleontology that gets mostly overlooked by amateur collectors. It's called paleobiology. Life changes to adapt to the changes in the surrounding environment. It's called evolution. If climate changes faster than you can adapt? Good-bye species! Paleobiologists collect the things most often neglected. The pollens, seeds, leaves, diatoms, etc. With these items they bring to life many of our popular...
The jury is out.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I need your help. For jury duty. Everyone raise your right hand. Blah, Blah, Blah. Take your seats. It will be your duty to decide the life, or death, of a new species. Let me lay out the foundation. Several years ago I was collecting in the local Santee Limestone. I was looking primarily for decapods from the Middle Eocene. The formation has a lot of marine fossils, including a good assortment of echinoids. Occasionally I would come across complete specimens and would take them home to clean up...
Got crabs?   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I'm infested with crabs. No! Not those kind. Fossil crabs. In July 1996 a publication came out describing 25 new decapods from the Middle Eocene of North and South Carolina. I met the author not long after when I acted as a guide into one of the local quarries. Our friendship was instantaneous and we are now working together on a major publication. The 25 decapods he had described had come from the Santee Limestone formation. It's a hard (like concrete)limestone that runs from southern North...
Class is out.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
Okay! Okay! I know I goofed up my last report. I fell asleep leaning on the "paste" button. If the ditchweezil weren't such a strict school master we'd all have a delete function available to us. But he tries to hold us to a higher standard. I would imagine that my GPA is down the toilet by now. But after 20 years on submarines, I've gotten used to having my head in a lot of toilets while on liberty. I learned my lesson. Now it's your turn. Three years ago I got a visit from an old acquaint...
Paleo pain   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I think there should be a "Paleo Pain Hall of Fame". A little tribute to all of the amateur fossil collectors out there who have given blood for the hobby. A way to recognize the people who have given so much to society through their collecting, and donations, of fossils. I picture a bronze, let's make that gold, life size T-rex at one of the halls at the Smithsonian, in Washington, DC. A little plaque would be attached bearing the name of every fossil collector who has ever sprained a foot, p...
Shell it out.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
Today's my 35th anniversary. So Mrs. Bum insisted that I show a few of her items. I figured that if I want to see number 37, I'd best bow to her wisdom. There are three types of fossil collectors. Those that collect vertebrates. Those that collect invertebrates. And those that pick up everything. Literally! I kind of fall in the last group. But Mrs. Bum went through a period where she only collected shells. A brief two years living in Florida got her hooked and she carried it back to South C...
Playing opossum.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I was driving west on interstate 26 last week and noticed a dead armadillo on the side of the road. Fifteen years ago it would have caused a traffic jam. Armadillos just didn't come this far north. But something has attracted them here. And if it's true about global warming, they just might replace the opossum as the redneck traditional Sunday dish. Seeing it on the road reminded me of a project I had three years ago that involved another armadillo in South Carolina. But this one had been dead...
Table scraps   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
When I asked the "Ditchweezil" to participate in this site I told him outright that "I don't do shark teeth". It's not that I don't find them. You can't go anywhere in the lowcountry of South Carolina without having to stop evry few minutes to empty those pesky 4 inch megalodon out of your boots. Rather, I don't collect them to keep in the museum collections. We have enough megalodons thank you! I do pick up the better ones I come across. They are used as gifts to other collectors, big and small...
big ditch clean up   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
This is a trip from a few days ago when we received some heavy rains. I was the first one to hit the ditch after the rain had stopped, but I didn’t expect the water to be so high! I focused on the parts where the chandler bridge was exposed a lot of it was actually under water in some areas. I didn’t find much and just a few small teeth. I decided I’d wait a few days for the water to go down and come back. Well, I waited too long and was beat by someone else. They missed a spot along the ditch,...
finally a whole meg over 3 inches   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
This is actually a trip from about a week ago. I decided to take my nephew out to hunt some teeth at the ditch down the street from where I live. This time I brought a shifter and I put a window screen on the bottom to catch the smaller stuff falling through the holes. I was hoping to find some small rare teeth today, but I ended up digging out a meg instead. I was pretty satisfied for the day because the last time I found a whole meg over 3 inches was about a 11 months ago. ...
BRFC Day at the Cooper   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
RivrDigr came up from Florida on his family vacation and me and da f0ssZ joined him for a day diving the cooper. It was a pretty nice day to dive, but the current was about slack for the whole time we dove. We all had two tanks under and we dove at the same time, so we ran into each other underwater a few times. It was a pretty uneventful dive except for da f0ssZ almost having to ditch some equipment. He had a gear malfunction and we had to go pick him up. We took every opportunity to tease him ...
BRFC Day at the Cooper   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
A great opportunity arose this fossilin’ trip. Rivdigr called me and the great serrated Weezil up for a diving trip. The Digr was up in SC on vacation, and like all BRFC gents, took time to help remove fossils from their earthy domiciles. We met up at the boat ramp about 9AM, loaded up and took a nice boat ride in the Cooper. After gearing up, I flipped into the river and swam to the bottom. The first dive was, well, like my first time ever diving. My headlight kept coming loose from my head, an...
BRFC Day at the Cooper   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
It was time to plan a family vacation, I convinced my wife that S.C. would be a perfect place to go. After all, there was warm weather, sandy beaches and better yet--fossils! You can't have a family vacation without fossils. I gave D.W. & Da f0ssZ a call to see if they could break free to do some diving in the Cooper. They were able to get a day off during the week which was perfect because the weekends get pretty crowded on the river, especially a holiday weekend. We met up with dw and df t...
Catching up on posts   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I finally cleaned up the hundreds of teeth that I’ve accumulated over the past 8 months from toothing trips. I haven’t gone toothing much lately because of school and work, but now I’m about to lose my job because we are going out of business and I plan to take a break from college and not go for the summer semester. You know what that means more free time to go toothing! Unfortunately, I still have to find another job, but until then I’m going to try to go toothing as much as possible....
Another MEGA day at the Ditch   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
We've had another rainy week, and the ditch never really got low after last week's deluge. My kids have been seeing the killers I've been scoring there lately, and they both wanted to go. We started up the small creek next to where I park, but we quickly muddied up the water and found it impossible to see the bottom. We exited the ditch and then went in at another point right next to the Chandler Bridge wonderland where my killers have been coming from. To avoid messing anything up, we splashed ...
The Dynamic Duo   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
The rain has all but stopped now, so its time to hunt the big ditch. Of all the ditches I know, this one is the best with a big rain. The soft chandler bridge is high up on the banks, but when the water gets deep, it easily erodes and the teeth come out to play. I was very excited to come to this spot when I arrived to find no footprints. Today is going to be a jackpot! Almost half of the stream was too deep for me to look in, so I concentrated on the shallow areas, and on the walls. I hit best ...
The Saturday Song and Dance   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
The massive rainfall on Thursday was good for fossil hunting everyhwere, and even though I wasn't foolish enough to think I was the first to walk the big ditch, I figured the volume of water that flowed through the ditch was bound to rinse out something nice. I didn't expect a big killer, but I did have my sights set high. I wanted another reef shark tooth, and unbelievably, I found one. Its a really nice one, to boot. Frosting on the cake was a decent little sqlualodon towards the end of my hun...
The Super Cooper Trip   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
After months of planning the long awaited road trip to the Cooper river finally arrived. The drive up from Florida was pretty rough, non-stop rain the whole way up. But thoughts of the giant megs that awaited us kept me going. Actually, with this being our first trip to the Cooper I really wasn't expecting a whole lot. A couple of megs and maybe some old bottles and I would have been happy. We had 4 days on the river I expected the first couple of days would just be recon, then maybe the last c...
Time to Dive Again!   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
The weEziLf0n clucked Thursday night and as soon as I looked at the number, I smiled. It was Ted, and he wanted to dive Saturday. I was totally in. I scored some new gear this week and I was excited to try it out in the river. Saturday was a beautiful, crystal clear sunny day. We hit an old faithful spot just as the tide started to fall. I was in first, and I got blasted for the first 30 minutes, but I hunted with vengence. The viso was so great that we actually had light from the sun at 17 feet...
Dumb Luck   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
It was a beautiful morning to wake up and smell the fresh dirt piles and squalid pools of rainwater at the new pit. The best part of it all was that there were no footprints in site. All the rain lately has washed the heck out of the piles and I had another one of those great days hunting. I just couldn't stop picking up teeth. The best find of the day obviously was the big megalodon tooth, but how I found it is the cool part. I was bending down to pick up a fragment of a shark tooth and for som...
Ye Olde Faithful Fossil Ditch   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
Before I moved, I took pix of all the teeth I had on my workbench so they wouldn't be lost in the shuffle. The stuff in the photo is the cumulative result of my trips to the big ditch from about a month ago to about a week before I started packing. It rained a lot in there, but its getting tougher to find anything there. First, a lot more people hunt it now than before and I'm not usually the first one there anymore. Second, over the past 10 years that I've been hunting this spot, the county has...
The Law of Averages   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
Collecting today was truly going to test the law of averages. With enough collecting and in the correct locations, a nice find should turn up. I have collected at LaFarge on many occasions, and to balance out my numerous scores, I did not fill up a medicine bottle. No worry though, the second spot proved to be much better. I sifted this area pretty hard, and found a little meg first. Not bad. A few shovel fulls later, I was slowly rinsing out the gravel and this little whale tooth popped out. T...
Lazy Fossil Hunting   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
The weather has been sopping wet this spring in coastal South Carolina. Every week it seems like we get at least one day where it pours enough to make it worth while to go to the ditch. tha weEzlinG is all over me to take him to the ditch every time he sees a raindrop, so I've always got someone to hunt with. Today was like most other days, we leisurely walked the same route and looked in the same spots and remarkably, there were more teeth. The easy eroding Chandler Bridge is far above the bott...
A good day to leave work early   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I have been working so much lately that there has barely been time to fossil hunt. I've always heard that if you don't make time for something, you will never get around to doing it. So today I left work a little early so I could hit Superpit on the way home. Its actually not on the way, but there are fossils there so I made it on the way. I haven't been there in a long time, so there should be some stuff that weathered out since my last visit, I thought as I drove down the long dirt road on the...
Another Weekend - Another Fossil Hunt   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
So my son and I have been hangin out a lot lately, and he wants to go fossil hunting all the time. Who am I to deny? He, his brother, and I hit the big ditch after a rainfall this week and even though there were footprints everywhere, we still found teeth. the weezling almost stepped on the 2 inch dingustiden. Seriously - his little boot was less than an inch from the blade as it was sticking out of the ashley formation. That stuff is AWESOME for preserving teeth. Its the upper member of the Coo...
Rain... Ditch... Fossils   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
Even though my favorite ditch is pretty much common knowledge among local fossil hunters, I still thought it was a good place to try on a sunny day, two days after a nice rain. You can't find anything if you don't go. My son and I walked the normal route and found that even though the ditch had been walked, the guy with first dibs on the finds came when the water was high. Today we could see the bottom perfectly, and we found a bunch of stuff. Nothing super killer, but you can't argue with the t...
Marathon Fossil Hunting   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
It rained all day yesterday, so I was nearly foaming at the mouth to get out and score some paleo goodies. I left early and arrived at my destination, surprised that no one else was there. The road in is really muddy, so I had to walk it instead of drive, so I parked and went into power walking mode to quickly cover the mile I had to cover before I could find anything. When I finally arrived, to my sheer delight, I found that the hills I have been hunting at this spot for the past few years had ...
The Death March - part 2   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
Day 2 of our fossil hunt - we decided not to dig again as the pain had not yet subsided from our previous day's dig. We were only going to walk some ditches, maybe dig a little if we run across some nice layer. The first spot was the other end of a ditch I used to hunt with I was 8. It has Chandler Bridge formation all along the bottom for about 100 yards. Then it disappears on both ends. In that one section, the possibilities for nice angustidens are very good. I ended up finding a real shamer ...
The Death March - part 2   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I made a two-day fossil trip to get some of the original BRFC paleomagic back. It was nice to go toothin' again, but the relentless digging and FossZsifting yielded little. I even made it home in time pick up the little monsters and avoid fosstility. The total haul from day one and two are together. One notable find is the partial croc scute from the ditch with Chandler Bridge formation....
The Superpit Death March   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
Its been a while since the gang has gotten together to go on a fossil hunt. da f0ssZ came down for a 2 day fossil bonanza, and tha duDe was more than happy to answer the call to hunt megalodon teeth. We decided to go to an old spot since there was nothing else going on hotspot-wise. I probed around and found some gravel down pretty deep, and I started to peel off the overburden to get down to the layer. the duDe borrowed my probe and found a spot close by. I found fossil whale bone right away. l...
Thankful for FOSSILS!   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I was going to go diving today, but the weather didn't cooperate. Rain two days ago raised the river level, lowered the water temperature, and killed the visibility. With head hung low, I returned my unused tanks to the dive shop in disgrace. Not willing to miss a date with rocks, I scooped up Indiana and went to hunt an old spot. We walked for hours and picked up pounds of scrap each. Neither of us found anything great, but its always good to find a bunch of stuff....
The River Delivers   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA

While the trip to Aurora two weeks ago was nice, my land collecting sortie last weekend amongst the eagle-sized South Carolina mosquitos and deer flies wasn't nearly as productive. Add the heat, humidity, and paucity of fossils, and the hunt was downright unenjoyable. I found about seven broken teeth, and instead of making a post like normal, I made plans to dive this weekend.

It was a cool, overcast Saturday morning when we met at the boat landing. Its near the end of the diving seas...

Preemptive Taco Bell   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I've been in somewhat of a slump lately, so I decided to work a little mojo to improve my Saturday dive. Last night I had Taco Bell for dinner, and I bought an extra Big Bean burrito for breakfast. If that didn't break my streak, nothing would! I met Ted at the boat ramp and we headed off to the spot we decided to dive last week. There were two fishermen right there, and not wanting to get hooked, we decided to dive at a spot down the river a little. After a little exploratory diving, I headed o...
Finally back under water   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I was able to go diving today after almost a month of hunting on dry land. I had high expectations, and as far as quantity goes, I met it. Its always easier to find a bunch of teeth underwater than on land. But I really didn't find any quality of quality either dive. The find that saved the day was the bottle - always a cool thing to come up with. On the downside, though, some of my gear bit the dust. On my second dive, I got my dive bag stuck on a branch and it ripped a giant hole in it. Since ...
Cooper River Keeper   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
It was again time to hit the Cooper with my new diving buds. I gave them the option of going somewhere new or trying the same spot again. It took Ted about half a second to decide he wanted to go the same place as last week. For one, he remembered the haul I brought back and for two, we lost an anchor last and he wanted to try and find it. So it was decided - we would dive for fossils in the same place as last week. No matter, I just like to dive and the gravel beds at this spot are unimaginably...
The Fossil Divemaster   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I've been saving this post for the new site, and now that its up I can finally put it out there. A few weeks ago when I hooked up with my new dive belt, I met this dude in the dive shop. We shot the breeze for a little bit and I found out he was a fossil diver. I gave him my card and told him a few places to check out in the river. He called me the other day and told me he went where I said to go, but that he got blown out of the water by the current and didn't really find a thing, so he was inv...
Megalodon in the mist   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
It crossed my mind that I haven't been to Superpit in a while, so my son and I scooted out there before lunch to see what had washed out since our last visit. It was a good move, because the place was loaded! We were only there for an hour because it was so hot and humid, but look at the haul. I actually found a megalodon tooth completely exposed in a hole I was digging in the last time da f0ssZ came down. Too bad I didn't bring my camera, because it was a great pedestal. We got home and cleaned...
Indiana's Pit   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I was going to go fossil diving today, but all the rain this week has destroyed visibility like you wouldn't believe. Instead of wasting time not seeing anything and getting blown down the river by the vicious current, I decided to take Indiana up on his offer to go to his new pit. A couple weeks ago, he and a friend found 14 pounds of shark's teeth there walking. Those kinds of days are always fun, so I was primed. We walked all over the place, but never really found anything awesome other than...
Back on dry land   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
thA weeZlinG has been asking me to take him fossil hunting lately, and its been killing me not to take him because I've been diving so much lately. We had a huge rainfall two days ago, though, so the Big Ditch was prime for picking. When we arrived, we saw that it had just been dug out recently. That usually spells s-c-o-r-e, so we were hyped. We walked nearly the whole mile and a half of ditch but not in vain. I scored two nice angustidens, one nearly perfect. My son found about 10 teeth, inclu...
Raking in the shark teeth   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
It rained really hard again last night, so this afternoon I took tha weEzlinG out to the ditch to hunt fossils. The water was a little high and still a little dirty, but we managed to scrape a bunch of shark teeth from the ditch. The highlight (besides my son's face when he fell into the ditch!) of the day was digging a tooth I already knew was a shamer from the chandler bridge formation at the bottom of the ditch. I also found a couple big chunks of megalodon teeth. Its always a tense moment wh...
I Have Created a Monster   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
Everyday, my son asks me to take him fossil hunting. I'm loving it except for the fact that I'm so busy lately. Well, today we made time to go check out the ditch. Some good rainfall came to our area two days ago, so I decided to go to the big ditch to try our luck. Mere minutes after our arrival, he found a 2 inch angustidens laying out clear as anything. He was happy the rest of the day, so it was my turn next. I pulled a really nice mako right from the middle of the creek, followed by a pair ...
A nice hardcore toothing trip.   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
This is a trip from about 3 weeks ago. This was the first place I hit on the 4 places I went to that day. I woke up at around 6:30AM and got ready and headed out to the ditch around 7:30AM and just my luck there was already a guy hunting the ditch :(. So not wanting to waste anymore time I left to go check out other areas....
Playin' catchup with the rain   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
I had two quick hunts two days in a row out to superpit. The first day, yesterday, I only hit the piles because the workers were fixing the road to the pit. Today I took tha weEzlinG out to hunt the pit. It hasn't been touched in over a month and we've had lots of rain since then, so we did pretty well. Nothing huge, but there was a good amount to be found so it held our interest for about an hour before we exhausted the hunting area. My best find, a 1 7/8" mako came when I went back to pull my ...
Cold Day Good Teeth   Berkeley County, South Carolina, USA
Heres another trip that should have been posted about 2 weeks ago. They had just dug out a lot of the chandler bridge and put it up on to the sides of the ditch. The best thing I came home with was the hemi....
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