Massive Procheloniceras Ammonite Fossil

Name: Procheloniceras sp. aff. Albrechtiaustriae

Geological Time: Lower Cretaceous (112 MA)

Size: 21 by 17.8 inches (about 80 pounds)

Fossil Site: Coastal Sahara Desert in Morocco

Procheloniceras AmmoniteThis is a truly massive marine fossil from the time of dinosaurs. Coming from Aptian-age limestone in Morocco, it dates to about 112 million years old. While the species has yet to be taxonomically described, as is the case for many Moroccan fossils, Procheloniceras is found in many localities worldwide (e.g., Texas, Hungary and France). Consequently, the genus is sometimes used as an index to mark the Aptian-Albian stage transition of the Lower Cretaceous.

Specimens of this enormous size (80 pounds) are difficult to come by, and authentic specimens of such size are even harder to find. Procheloniceras is a favorite fossil within the local cottage industry to carve rather than dig and clean; a white chalky patina, lack of contrast between the shell cast and matrix and just a bit too much perfection betray such contrived specimens.

click ammonite pictures to enlarge

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