Author Archives: Mark Wilson

About Mark Wilson

Mark Wilson is a Professor of Geology at The College of Wooster. He specializes in invertebrate paleontology, carbonate sedimentology, and stratigraphy. He also is an expert on pseudoscience, especially creationism.

Wooster’s Fossil of the Week: An Early Cretaceous cobble-dwelling bryozoan

One of my formative experiences as a young paleontologist was working in the Faringdon Sponge Gravels (Lower Cretaceous, Upper Aptian) of south-central England while on my first research leave in 1985. (I was just a kid!) These gravels are extraordinarily … Continue reading
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Wooster’s Fossils of the Week: An Ordovician hardground with a bryozoan and borings — and an unexpected twist

The view above, one quite familiar to me, is of a carbonate hardground from the Upper Ordovician Grant Lake Formation exposed near Washington, Mason County, Kentucky. We are looking directly at the bedding plane of this limestone. The lumpy, spotted … Continue reading
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Wooster’s Fossil of the Week: A faulted oyster ball from the Middle Jurassic of Utah

I’m returning this week to one of my favorite fossil types: the ostreolith, popularly known as the “oyster ball”. These were lovingly described in a previous blog entry, so please click there to see how they were formed and some … Continue reading
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Wooster’s Fossils of the Week: Silicified productid brachiopods from the Permian of West Texas

The three beauties above are productid brachiopods from the Road Canyon Formation (Middle Permian, Roadian, approximately 270 million years old) in the Glass Mountains of southwestern Texas. They are part of a series we’ve done on the silicified fauna of … Continue reading
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Wooster’s Fossils of the Week: Silicified chonetid brachiopods from the Permian of West Texas

Above are four valves of the chonetid brachiopod Dyoros planiextensus Cooper and Grant, 1975. They are preserved by silicification and were recovered from a block of the Road Canyon Formation (Roadian Stage of the Guadalupian Series of the Permian System) … Continue reading
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An unexpected early return from China, but at least I got to see the inside of a Chinese hospital

WOOSTER, OHIO — I am safely home far too early from my China adventure, and here begins a painful tale. I tell it first to complete the 2014 China Expedition story, and because there may be some lessons for geologists … Continue reading
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The karst topography around Guiyang, China

GUIYANG, CHINA — I find this karstic landscape enchanting. Photo taken at the airport. Continue reading

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An evening dinner in Guiyang, China

GUIYANG, CHINA — After the long flights from Shenyang via Nanjing, Team China (let’s just call it that!) arrived in Guiyang, the capital of Guizhou Province. We had an excellent view of the surrounding karstic mountains. I hope to have … Continue reading
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Wooster’s Fossil of the Week: A barnacle and sponge symbiosis from the Middle Jurassic of Israel

[Programing note: Wooster's Fossil of the Week is now being released on Fridays to correspond with the popular Fossil Friday on Twitter and other platforms.] This week’s fossil is again from the Matmor Formation (Middle Jurassic, Callovian) of southern Israel. … Continue reading
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Shenyang, China

SHENYANG, CHINA — My first post from astonishing China. I’ve been here about a day and a half now and am simply floored by all I’ve seen and experienced. I’ve seen a fair bit of the world, but no place … Continue reading
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