Data: I've been looking for identification of one of my gastropod fossils for a long time. I bought it in an obscure little shop somewhere in the middle of nowhere, where they had no information on it what so ever. I was giving it another go on the Internet, to no avail. But there you were.
I was hoping you could place a photograph of this shell on your page, so that I may finally find peace.

  • 3 cm (1.2 inches), and I bought it in a shop in Holland.The shell itself has crystallized into what I think is quartz. It came with zero information, unfortunately.

Thanks in advance,

Send Ideas to: Robbert



  • I suspect that it is calcite rather than quartz, although localities exist with quartz either replacing or casting shells. Calcite often has about that color. There are some easy but destrutive ways to tell the two apart, but if he can make out individual crystals the shape will help. There's no fixed amount of time required for this sort of preservation-it can be in the Pliestocene or the Cambrian.
    Identifying the snail is difficult with no idea of just where it came from. Does it seem likely that it came from somewhere in the general area (northwest Europe), or might this be something from anywhere in the world?
    Anything visible in the rock? It probably contains microfossils of some sort, but they require fancy preparation techniques and a high-power microscope. You might be able to get someone at a local college geology department to take a look ( e.g., by assigning a piece of the rock as an unknown for a student to work on).
    If the rock is soft enough, clearing it away to expose the opening of the snail could help.--
    Dr. David Campbell

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