This is a collection of 8 vertebrate fossils, collected over several years from the phosphate mines in the Bone Valley Formation, decades ago when it was legal to enter the area. The colors are so unique and they are ONLY FOUND AT THIS FAMOUS SITE. There are three baby Megalodon teeth (Bone Valley was believed to be a Megalodon nursery due to the shallows!). There are also three horse teeth along with two fossil bones of Palaeolama, a prehistoric camelid that once lived in the area. The beige bone is an ASTRAGALUS or ankle bone. The other is a METATARSAL bone also from Palaeolama.
We collected all these ourselves and the vintage photos can be seen on our Facebook page. Countless hours were spent climbing spoil piles in the record-hot sun and mud to find this modest set! Since over 30 years ago, the mines have forbid entry by fossil collectors aside from a few useless club hunts over already picked-over areas. This would be a perfect study collection for class or clubs. There are some really cool fossils in this group! All fossils are exactly as they were collected. Bone Valley offers a highly unique formation to produce fossils with colors that are not seen ANYWHERE else on the planet!
From the middle Miocene, 16 million years ago to the earliest Pliocene, about 4.5 million years ago, no other region in North America can claim a more varied and richer wealth of important vertebrate fossil finds than from the famous BONE VALLEY region in the phosphate mining district of Central Florida. During this time, thick forests and grassy plains covered a stubby peninsula that only went as far south to what is now Polk County. If you were to visit this area at that time, you would find six-foot tortoises, shovel-tusked mastodons, hornless rhinos, humpless camels, iguanas, gila monsters, and 30-foot crocodiles. The warm waters surrounding the area were filled with a rich variety of life as well, including long-beaked dolphins, bony fish, rays, sea cows and sharks including the notorious and now extinct giant killer shark, megalodon.
Bone Valley fossils are rare and highly-priced specimens. Due to the unique geological characteristics of the phosphate-rich region, most of the fossils are beautifully preserved with amazing detail and color. Unlike the majority of southeastern U.S. fossils retrieved from rivers and streams, Bone Valley specimens are found in dry earth and are not stained with the typical cruddy black and brown muck from rivers. Because Bone Valley fossils comprise so much variety of both ancient marine and terrestrial creatures, along with their unique and rare beauty of preservation, specimens from this locality are very rare and of great value to any fossil collection.