Chasing ancient goldbugs
January 8, 2020 9:21 AM   Subscribe

Pyrite fossils can be shiny and sparkly (Fossil Identification), but they can also be very informative. Markus Martin, an amateur paleontologist, returned to Beecher's Trilobit Bed (archived Yale page) in upstate New York, and discovered Martin Quarry, named after himself as the discoverer, where he found ancient arthropods turned into fool’s gold, preserved in exquisite detail (Atlas Obscura). He posts some of his finds and collaborations on Instagram as goldbugsofficial. posted by filthy light thief (7 comments total) 21 users marked this as a favorite
Ooh, I'm wearing my pyritized ammonite necklace right now. This post rules!
posted by rewil at 10:27 AM on January 8 [1 favorite]

So cool! When I was a kid, I received a piece of stone as a gift with two small trilobite fossils in it. I loved the hell out of that thing, and have always wanted to search for and find one in the wild. Now I gotta go visit my parent's house and look for it. It's been around for a half billion years, it's probably still at mom and dad's.
posted by SoberHighland at 10:31 AM on January 8 [1 favorite]

So what would be the best way to get my skull turned into pyrite? Asking for a friend.
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 11:22 AM on January 8

Die in heavy iron-rich sediment such that the sulfur from your rotting flesh reacts anaerobically with with the iron. This will all take a few million years, so leave good notes where we can find you. Whoever may dig you up might accidentally call you Sven, if Robyn Hitchcock is to believed.
posted by scruss at 11:37 AM on January 8 [6 favorites]

Good opportunity to use the word "pseudomorph" in conversation.
posted by ovvl at 12:10 PM on January 8

This post rules!

I see what you didn’t do there.
posted by Sys Rq at 1:06 PM on January 8 [2 favorites]

Wow, the preservation is spectacular! Another one of my favorite fossil locations with good preservation is the Rhynie Chert.
posted by ambulocetus at 7:07 PM on January 8 [1 favorite]

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