Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 73.djvu/125

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121
FLORISSANT; A MIOCENE POMPEII
 

PSM V73 D125 Fossil soapberry tree sapindus stellariaefolius.png

Fossil Soapberry Tree {Sapindus stellariæfolius).

 

few fragmentary remains, without a skull. There is no doubt that mammals of many kinds abounded in the vicinity of the lake, and it is very likely that some of them were entombed, their bones waiting to be exhumed by some fortunate paleontologist of the future.

Feathers are occasionally found, and two fairly complete birds have been discovered, one a plover, the other apparently a finch. The fishes already mentioned number eight species. Of molluscs, we know two terrestrial species and four or five fresh-water ones. Thirty different spiders have been described by Scudder, and we have found others. The harvest spiders or phalangids, and the millipedes, are each represented by a single kind. It is for the insects, of course, that Florissant is most famous, surpassing even Œningen.

Mr. Scudder wrote:

The insects preserved in the Florissant basin are wonderfully numerous, this one locality having yielded in a single summer more than double the number of specimens which the famous localities at Œningen furnished Heer