Fall 2014 Interns in Haile Quarry

This morning the interns headed out for a brief time in the field, in an area close to Newberry, FL.  Roger Portell, Invertebrate Paleontology Collections Manager, and Cristina Robins, PCP PIRE Project Assistant, accompanied the interns to Haile Quarry, where they examined sinkhole stratigraphy and looked for fossils among the many spoil piles of Ocala Limestone (Eocene age).  Molds of numerous bivalves and gastropods, echinoid tests, sea fans, and a few fragmentary carapaces of crabs were found.  One stop at the infill of a former sinkhole yielded several bone fragments – portions of a tortoise and a horse tibia (likely Pleistocene).  Luckily the heat was not too oppressive.  This afternoon the interns headed off to view the exhibits at the Florida Museum of Natural History in Powell Hall, including displays of Thomas Farm (a locality in Florida of similar age to many Panamanian localities) and a special Panama exhibit from the Panama Canal Centennial celebration.

InternsHaile

Intern Lillian Pearson (left) and Invertebrate Paleontology Collections Manager Roger Portell look for fossils in Haile Quarry, Newberry, FL. Photo by Daniel Mercado.

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About Cristina Robins

The mission of the Panama Canal Project - Partnerships in International Research and Education [PCP PIRE] is to advance knowledge of the extinct faunas and floras of the ancient Neotropics based on the new fossil discoveries along the Canal. Consistent with NSF's PIRE program objectives, university students (undergraduate and graduate), postdocs, and faculty are engaging in PCP paleontological, geological, and biological research and Broader Impacts outreach. The ultimate outcome of the PCP PIRE will be to promote discovery and advance knowledge while training the next generation of scientists better able to engage in international experiences.

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