The Dallas Paleontological Society was founded in 1984 for the purpose of promoting interest in and knowledge of the science of paleontology. It was intended by the founding members that the Society would be a network for the exchange of data between professionals and serious amateurs in this field.
Regular August Meeting Wednesday 8/14
UFOs – Unidentified Fossil Objects
The Dallas Paleontological Society met at 7:00 PM on Wednesday, August 14th, at the Brookhaven College Geotechnology Institute (Building H) of Brookhaven College (3939 Valley View Lane, Farmers Branch). Ben Neuman, Associate Professor and Head of Biology at Texas A&M University in Texarkana, spoke and led a workshop on “Identify your undescribed Pennsylvanian brachiopods from the Mineral Wells area”. The Mineral Wells Fossil Park is a free public area, established with the help of the DPS (spearheaded by past-president Lee Higginbotham) where fossil collecting is encouraged by the city.
Ben has a BS in Biology from the University of Toledo in Ohio and then earned his PhD in Biological Sciences from the University of Reading, UK. After positions at The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California and then back at Reading, he joined TAMU Texarkana in 2016. He also joined the DPS Pennsylvanian Study Group where he has made himself invaluable. He researched the fossils from Jacksboro and Mineral Wells, compiled a Pictorial Guide to Upper Pennsylvanian Fossils, and wrote a more complete and original photo identification guide to the brachiopods. Ben showed and taught us to identify many brachiopods not previously described from Mineral Wells. We brought our Mineral Wells unknowns (especially brachiopods) for identification.
To download a few pictures of the Grand Opening of the Mineral Wells Fossil Park, click here.
Recent DPS Field Trip
SHERMAN CREEKS FIELD TRIP – WRAP-UP by Roger Farish
A few of us started Saturday, July 13 at the IHOP in McKinney. Leaving the Jack-in-the-Box on FM1417, someone counted 19 vehicles with about 46 people who met to go play in the water - in Post Oak Creek in Sherman. Our preferred access was the Kubota Dealership (formerly Grayson County Equipment and now Six and Mango Equipment) said NOT ANY MORE to possible DPS access to their wonderful gravel bar, so we entered the creek about a quarter mile downstream. This site was a former nursing home and is now owned and controlled by the Sherman ISD (no problems, but we did have a visit from them and will seek approval next time).
The conditions were perfect – the wind was out of the north and relatively cool while the creek was very wadable and also cool. Recent rains had turned over the gravel bars and left the urban creek relatively clean. Evidence could be seen at least 15’ high in the bordering trees. Scout Steve Schliesing and son Will had earlier found us a poison ivy – free access to the creek through the woods and cut steps into the steep bank to facilitate access.
Both the surface collectors and the screeners had success with shark teeth as hundreds were found. Basically, we proved that the harder you work – the luckier you get.
Kathy Kasper and Linda Farish found multiple Ptychodus teeth on the surface (see Kathy’s largest-of-the-trip find, left) while a few are still afflicted by the ‘Ptychodus curse’ (don’t mention this to Joe).
I happened to screen up a P. atcoensis where the occlusal striations come to a point or chevron.
Joe O’Neil found the largest Pleistocene tooth – a bison antiquus, I believe.
Tony Ithica continued his annual strategy of finding an obstacle in the river then screening arond it for the teeth it would attract.
Trisha Lana found an interesting vertebra while dry screening. Snake, we think.
Shelly Mason-Little and husband worked to yield the these finds.
New member Michael Zhang screened up and down the creek with success netting 7 Ptychodusand many other teeth
People collect things in different ways. Green katydid on Will's hat (left).
Many of the bladed teeth found were complete and some large partial teeth found new homes. Laura Garsea and fiancée Justin provided a cooler of water bottles – Thank You very much.
We provided screens and shovels as well as give-away buckets and nail aprons. We had no casualties and not even any injuries were reported. At last report, Brian Bowles and Shiny Wu had fun.
Fossil Bits and Pieces
The DPS offers extra benefits for Members. Types of Memberships and costs of each can be found under MEMBERSHIP choice in the menu bar, then New Member Online Application. Below is a list of what Members receive and the reasons you should plan to join (or re-join) us in our paleo adventures!
Newsletter: The Fossil Record, the Society’s monthly newsletter, is sent to all members.
Special Events: Members receive Eblasts on surprise events and reminders of upcoming events.
DPS Website: Current members have access to the Members section of the DPS website, which includes the Membership Directory, past newsletters, and more.
Field Trips: Some field trips have limited access (quarries, Oklahoma trilobites, etc.), and some field trips are designated members-only.
Excavations: Participation in Fossil Bureau of Investigation (FBI) excavations.
Discounts: Fossil prep kits, display items, books, and other unique items are occasionally offered at a discount to members.
Occasional Papers: Each Occasional Papers is a collection of in-depth articles on paleontology written by members. One copy per membership is free to members immediately following publication. Past Occasional Papers are available for purchase.
Volunteerism: Volunteer opportunities to work the DPS booths provides community outreach, interaction with the public, and occasionally free entry to an event.
Family: Family Membership provides a discount to a second adult and allows for PIT Crew membership in which children can participate in special PIT Crew-only workshops, classroom activities, and field trips.
Dues pay for: food and drinks at the monthly meetings, refreshments on field trips, scholarships, and professional speakers for special meetings.
About Us and Our Monthly Meetings
The Dallas Paleontological Society normally meets the second Wednesday of every month at 7:00 PM at Brookhaven College, unless we have something special happening that month. Please check our Calendar for exact dates. Come meet with us, hear a speaker, learn about paleontology, and bring your unidentified fossils and unique finds to share with the group. You will be welcome, and we will enjoy meeting you. Beware of big words! For a map of our meeting location Click Here.
DPS Officers for 2019
The results of the election of officers for 2019 are:
(left to right after Rocky Manning)President: Philip Scoggins
Vice President: Stephan Gozdecki
Fossil Record Editor: Estee Easley
Treasurer: Pam Lowers
Secretary: Ming Lee
The PIT Crew
The Paleontologists In Training is a program of the DPS that is open to kids from age 7 to 15. If you are interested in fossils, want to have fun on field trips, and like learning about our beautiful world, come join us at one of our meetings, or field trips. You will find it educational, and fun at the same time!
For more information, Click the link here or click the link under the home page called "For Kids - The Pit Crew" , to see policies, upcoming events, announcements, and how to sign up to take advantage of this new program.
Join us now
Come and join us for a great time at our next meeting, and click below to become a member. Individual and Family memberships are available, and kids can participate in the PIT Crew (Paleontogists In Training).