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216

Fossil Palm Frond with Fish — Green River Formation

Property of a Midwestern Collector

Fossil Palm Frond with Fish — Green River Formation

Fossil Palm Frond with Fish — Green River Formation

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Fossil Palm Frond with Fish — Green River Formation

Sabalites sp., Diplomystus dentatus

Early Eocene (approx. 50 million years ago)

Green River Formation, Lincoln County, Wyoming


74½ by 50¼ by 6¾ (189.2 x 127.6 x 17.1 cm). 289 pounds (131 kg). Mounted on a dark wooden frame.

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This specimen exhibits multiple large, fully-fanned Sabalites frond segments and the well-preserved fish, Diplomystus. 50 million years ago, Wyoming's Green River Formation was comprised of 25,000 square miles (40,000 km) of interconnected subtropical lakes bursting with both flora and fauna. Today the area is known as the "Fossil Lake", the source of some of the most abundant and well-preserved freshwater fossils anywhere in the world.


The majority of these specimens are fauna, not flora, with palms being exceptionally scarce as a result of thin leaves that are highly susceptible to decomposition prior to fossilization. Because of this, palms boast some of the largest and most prized leaves in the geologic record, with the natural Sabalites and Diplomystus mural offered here serving as a beautiful example.