MadSci Network: Other

RE: Why are so many fossils found in New Jersey?

Area: Other
Posted By: Roger Raimist, Prof. Biological Sciences
Date: Mon Dec 2 14:35:15 1996
Not knowing exactly where you live or what these fossils are, I can only be 
general in my answer. The state of NJ was under the sea not so long ago, in 
geologic time. It was closer to the tropics and this warm, shallow coastal sea 
was rich in plankton and small animals that fed on them. Sharks and squid came 
in to feed on these smaller organisms. It was a rich, tropical coral reef. 
Most of the reef is gone now and only remnants can be found. It stretched from 
Maine to Florida. These shark teeth are common as sharks shead their teeth like 
you shead skin cells. Teeth in sharks are modified epidermal cells like scales 
on a fish. As old ones wear out and fall off, new ones grow behind them. 


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