Welcome to the SHELL MIDDEN!!

Formerly known as the “boneyard”, this month Deep Sea News brings you  the  SHELL MIDDEN!!! A much more exciting and biodiverse assemblage of paleoposts. We have an excellent array of forms available for display here that I do hope you enjoy

What is a shell midden? A fossilized assemblage of a typically molluscan community. Some were natural, they become covered in sediment and fossilized, others are the debris piles left over from more ancient human civilizations. In these communities we are able to see a snapshot of entire ecosystem. The multiple species of bivalve, perhaps some cryptic, interspersed in the seemingly monolithic mass of molluscs. Barnacles encrusting the ridges of bivalves, small neritids from days long past yet strikingly similar to extant individuals. The damage from crab claws, drilling from limpets, tubes of serpulid all encrusting the surface. A shell midden can hold the key to a vibrant, intact ecology not so readily seen elsewhere.

Shell midden stratum, Kasori midden preserve north, Chiba Japan. Wikimedia Commons, CC licensed.

Shelled Fauna

Danna write about a new paper where they found fossilized plankton in the fossilized mouth of fossilized ammonites!

Marine Fauna

Alton describes a curious bone fracture in a juvenile whale flipper that healed before the whale died and become fossilized at his Vertebrate Paleontology Blog.


Brian of Laelaps places the findings of sabertoothed-cats living alongside early hominin-like fossils in the greater context of our society’s fascination of angry, fighting, vicious prehistoric predators cautioning on how we weave stories about our past.

Art & Culture

Tarchia at Pseudoplocephalus discusses the image of female paleontologists in the media. Brings up many good points!

Trish at her Obligatory Art Blog gives us the rundown on paleo kid’s shows.

Glendon at the Flying Trilobite mixes paleontology and fantasy and comes up with some fantastic new characters – Ana and her pet Obabina, and Anomalocarid Girl – for his Trilobite boy series. Can we just say TEH AWESUM!!1!

To counter Switek’s submission about carnage, Optimistic Painter blog paints a stunning piece that emphasizes dinosaurian carnage just to spite the boring image of Tyrannosaurus as a lazy scavenger.


Anthony at The Great Cretaceous Walk discusses the taxonomy of trace fossils! He also discusses why we should eat rocks (another trace fossil)!

David at Love in the Time of Chasmosaurs took a field trip through the Field Museum’s Flickrstream.

David at Superceros wonders if there were Mesozoic holdovers from after the Cretaceous extinction even, following on a new research that leaves not entirely convinced.

Andy at Open Source Paleontologist describes a new Triceratops-like dinosaur, sends his paper to critiques that he is refuting, and discusses how the open access process of submitting his paper and how PLoS One is teh r0xx0rs!

David at the History of Geology blog wrote a very nice post on Archaeopteryx celebrating the 150 year anniversary of its description this year!

New Jersey, not just for douchebag young adults bumming around the shore, but also badass fossil dinosaurs, Gary explains at Project Dryptosaurus.

Thanks for coming to the Shell Midden! Hope you enjoyed it and keep posted to the Boneyard blog carnival page for information on future editions! Step up the plate and become a host yourself!

Click image for source.

4 Replies to “Welcome to the SHELL MIDDEN!!”

Comments are closed.