Fossil Ray Dermal Denticle


1 in stock


This is a 1 inch Fossil Ray Dermal Denticle

This piece of the hard skin of a ray is similar to that of sharks. The skin feels exactly like sandpaper because it is made up of tiny teeth-like structures called placoid scales, similar to small armor plates.

This Fossil Ray Dermal Denticle is a scale that points towards the tail and helps to reduce friction from surrounding water when the animal swims. These are some of the only fossils preserved as most of the rays are made up of flesh and cartilage. Cartilage rarely fossilizes so the only evidence we have of these animals are the skin plates barbs and the mouth plates.

This was found by divers in the rivers of Florida. Rivers such as the Peace River and others are full of fossils. Because the area was home to many creatures when they died their remains were buried. But the shifting of river bottoms would subsequently expose them again.

Because the rivers change their course they would pass through areas that were once ocean bottoms during the Ice Age. But they would also cut through areas that once were dry land as well exposing mammal remains.

Fossils such as these from Florida are Ice Age or Pleistocene in age.