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The purpose of these pages is to share some of what I have learned during
my lifelong pursuit of some bizzare, mostly aquatic arthropods, the eurypterids
(eurypterida). I began this study quite by accident, having found a strange
little fossil in a creekbed near Geneseo, New York. While I had collected many
kinds of fossils at the time, I had never found anything like this. It was really a
waterworn pebble, and on the surface were two little eyes 'looking up' at
me. Behind the eyes, I saw several segments, the last of which disappeared
beneath the matrix. I quickly learned, from a local paleontologist, that I had
found a specimen of
Eurypterus, an aquatic arthropod first discovered in the
Silurian rocks of Central New York in 1818 by Mitchell.
Eurypterids of the
Late Silurian Salina
Group of New York
Eurypterid remains found in the strata
termed "Pittsford Shale" appear to have
been preserved as the result of storms in
Late Silurian times. Barren areas in the
strata are laterally replaced by areas rich
in eurypterid debris (see WINDROW in
photo at right) including abundant 'entire'
animals. The pages on this website will
reveal some of what has been recently
learned, from new exposures, about the
stratigraphy and fauna of the rocks that
underly the Pittsford, New York area and
that are referred to as the Pittsford Mem-
ber of the Vernon Formation.
ABOVE: Carapace of Hughmilleria socialis Sarle and assorted eurypterid debris formed in a
WINDROW, ie. a current-sorted collection of molted parts.  Note tergites, a coxa and a
telson. The white area is a thin sheet of Calcite. probably formed by ground waters. Pittsford
Member, Vernon Formation, Salina Group at Pittsford, New York.  CIURCA 050804-2A from
the Spring House Commons Site.
The Prehistoric World of the Eurypterids
Samuel J. Ciurca, Jr., Rochester, New York