The Chesapeake & Delaware Canal is occasionally dredged and the sand and mud are deposited in an area at the canal. In the mud, Cretaceous fossils, dedged up from the bottom of the canal, can be found.
There is plenty of sand to search through by just walking around, you could dig but its not really necessary as the fossils are usually visible on the ground. Small scale collecting is allowed at this site.
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From Delaware City, Delaware take route 9 (5th street) toward the canal. Before you cross the Reedy Point bridge, take a slight right onto a small road (Polktown Place). When the road ends turn left and proceed under the bridge a short distance to a left turn. The spoil piles are right up that dirt road.
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The fossils that can be found here are from the Late Cretaceous Mount Laurel Formation (Maastrichtian). Finds mostly include belemnites (some will show fluorescence under a black light), some Exogyra costata shells as well as Pyncnodonte mutabilis shells. Also shark teeth can be found but they are very scarce. The fossil shells can be rather large.
Watch out for all the broken glass!
There are 8 photographs of fossils from this location in our Fossil ID System.
Go to the DE Chesapeake & Delaware Canal Species List to identify your own finds!
Literature recommended by members
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Other locations in the area
Fossil location: Sewell
Society: Delaware Valley Paleontological Society: Academy of Natural Sciences
Thanks to Phil Schmitz for sending in this description
Everybody using the fossil collecting location descriptions from this site has to respect the Collecting Code!
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