The Bulletin
Editor - Jack Kallmeyer

April 2022
Fossils at the Top of the World

The Dry Dredgers welcome Professor Nigel Hughes from the University of California, Riverside as our featured speaker. Having Professor Hughes as our speaker seems appropriate on this the anniversary of our 8oth year since he was our featured speaker for our gala 75th anniversary celebration. His program is entitled, Ups and Downs in the Himalaya - using fossils to help understand the history of the world's highest mountains, and letting the local people know about it. Nigel has done extensive research on the trilobites from the Himalayas and has engaged in a major effort to help the local people understand the scientific worth of the fossil heritage under their feet.

Nigel earned his PhD from the University of Bristol in the UK. Currently, at the University of California, Riverside, Nigel specializes in paleobiology, especially of trilobites. Much of his field time is spent working in India on Lower Paleozoic paleogeography and tectonics (particularly the early Paleozoic history of India and the peri-Gondwanan region).

Long time members will know Nigel from his time here in Cincinnati as Curator of Invertebrate Paleontology at the Cincinnati Museum of Natural History. After leaving Cincinnati for California, he became PhD advisor for Brenda Hunda who now has his previous position at the Geier Collections and Research Center. Nigel’s other claim to fame is his trilobite song with ukelele accompaniment.

DATE: Friday, April 22, 2022
Via Zoom. Link to be sent by January 20th
           7:00 PM - 8:00 PM Beginner’s Class Breakout Room
            7:00 PM - 8:00 PM Informal Chat Main Room
            8:00 PM Main meeting with program

Beginner’s Class
by Greg Courtney

The Beginner's Class will be via Zoom from 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM on April 22nd. It will be held before the general meeting. This month's class will be presented by Asa Kaplan. His topic will be How Biominerals, Rock Types, and Oxygen Point the Way to Pristine Fossil Preservation (or Cruddy). It'll be a lesson on why the fossils are well preserved in some places but not in others. What are the clues to look for that they will be pristine?

You may recall that Asa has done a previous Beginner’s Class for us. If not, here is a bit about him: For Asa Kaplan, science is only as good as its ability to enrich everyday living. A Chicago - and St.Louis-based naturalist and social entrepreneur, Asa focuses on gathering community around hyperlocal nature experiences, including in urban settings. Though more informed by experiences of personal discovery, Asa's formal educational background includes Biology undergraduate (Yale) and Geology graduate work (University of Michigan) on brachiopods, trilobites, and cephalopods. Asa's recent projects include Missouri Fossil Hunters (, an effort to gather and mobilize the knowledge and experience of fossil amateurs statewide.

This class will be managed through the Zoom Breakout Room feature. Once you have joined the general meeting (using the link provided by Jack Kallmeyer on April 20th) you will need to locate the Breakout Room icon at the bottom of your screen and click it. Next click on the Beginner's Class Breakout Room (there will be only one choice) and then click Join. By clicking Leave Room you may return to the main meeting at any time. The Beginner's Class Breakout Room will end promptly at 8:00 PM and you will automatically be returned to the main meeting.

If you join the main meeting and do not see the Breakout Room icon, you need to ask Jack, who will be in the main meeting, to let you into the Beginner's Class Breakout Room.


April Field Trip – “Back So Soon?”
By Bob Bross

Certain things in life, once experienced, trigger an immediate desire to instantly do it again: riding The Beast at Kings Island; visiting Yellowstone National Park; watching “Top Gun” (still one of the best movie openings ever!); finding your first trilobite, etc.

So – why are we returning to Northeastern Kentucky so soon?

For many of us just emerging from a post-COVID hibernation, it is an opportunity to re-engage in field trip activities; others, well – it is simply a great place to visit; and newcomers will find rewards in this unique exposure of the Latonia (Kope) and Fairview formations.

On Saturday, April 23rd at 10:00 AM, we will gather on the slopes just south of the Ohio River. There is plenty of room to park roadside; however, please use caution when crossing this busy roadway. There are a number of terraced levels which are too steep to climb from one to another; however, as the road rises from North to South, you can gain access to each by going to the southern end and then proceeding north. (Don’t worry; it will quickly become clear when on the site.) Parents will need to closely monitor the safety of their children.

The exact directions to the site can be found in the full-sized Bulletin emailed and/or snail-mailed to dues-paying members. If you are not a member, here is how to become one.

This site is famous for some spectacular Edrioasteroid finds, along with crinoid calyces (plural form of “calyx” – had to look that one up), and many of the other Ordovician period fossils. As you may be there for a while, it is strongly recommended you bring water and some snacks – it’s a lot quicker than going back down to your vehicle!

As has been stated previously, our field trips are “rain or shine”; after our recent trip to Indiana, that also includes snow flurries! Spring storms do occasionally pop up, so weather status will be monitored at the site; should severe conditions develop, the field trip chair will issue a warning with an air horn. Also, please use extreme caution while on the slopes, especially with young children; there is plenty to find at the lower levels. As they say in the movies: Good Luck, and Good Hunting.



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