1.4" Fossil Fern (Alethopteris) Nodule - Mazon Creek

This is a 1.4", fossil fern (Alethopteris) from the Carbondale Formation, Coal City, Illinois. It is preserved inside an ironstone nodule associated with the famous Mazon Creek Lagerstätte. Only the pictured half of the nodule is included. It comes with an acrylic display stand.

Alethopteris is an extinct genus of seed fern that reproduced from seed as opposed to sporophyte reproduction of most modern ferns.

The Mazon Creek fossil beds are a deposit with exceptional fossil preservation, known as a conservation lagerstätte, located in Illinois. This location of late Paleozoic (~307 million years old) biota ranks among the great fossil sites around the world. The large variety of fossils collected here vary between plants and animals, including soft-bodied and insect preservations. Fossils from this site are often quite detailed and are preserved within siderite (iron carbonate) nodules.

Over 500 animal and 200 flora species have been described from Mazon Creek. The event that caused this die-off and preservation is believed to have started with a catastrophic flood event that buried the biota of the modern day Mazon Creek area. The deposition of river-borne silt and clay, brought on by upland erosion and delta progradation, contributed to the incredible preservation of one of the most complete records of Paleozoic biota.

This site has been collected for more than 100 years, and likely will continue to be collected by both professionals and amateurs for many years to come.

Alethopteris sp.
Coal City, Illinois
Carbondale Formation
1.4" fern, 2.1 x 1.8" nodule
We guarantee the authenticity of all of our
specimens. Read more about our
Authenticity Guarantee.