Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Mystery bumps

A cluster of three small red mounds has appeared on our chert pit. I couldn't say for sure that they are brand new, but I am pretty sure they are newer than this most recent Spring. I have a hypothesis as to what they might be, but I want to hear other opinions before I say what my guess is.

They're around 30-50 cm in diameter. They are definitely raised, and appear ringed by small rocks as though they erupted up from below. They are much too coarse and gravelly to be ant mounds. There is no mole or gopher activity around. I suspect geological, hydrological, or meteorological origin, not biological. I am pretty sure they are too recent to be a result of frost heaving.

They are formed in soft gravelly chert, which is rich in carbonates, iron and small fossils.

Any identification, positive or speculative?


At 7:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You have a chert pit? Do you carve your own long bows, as well?

And people think our in-ground, dripper pond is strange...

Just kidding...


At 8:39 PM, Blogger Bill Pulliam said...


Actually around these parts, a chert pit (often "churt pit") is a small quarry where gravelly cherty fill dirt is dug out, usually for building road beds. Ours is a leftover from the previous owner.


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