We're currently in the midst of an archaeology unit for 6th and 7th grades, and the students are working on excavation and field lab methods, as well as observation and pathology studies. Back in August, I contacted Potash Corporation in Aurora, NC to ask about getting some of the waste material from their mine, which is full of marine fossils like bivalves, fish bones, and teeth from sharks, dolphins, and sperm whales.
Just for kicks, when the students asked where I got the dirt, my first answer was, "In three 5-gallon buckets from FedEx".
Anyway, these fossils are 19-20 million years old, and they washed down to the North Carolina coastal plain from the Appalachian mountain system (which includes the Blue Ridge mountains). This means, of course, that the Blue Ridge mountains were once under the ocean!
Click here to go to Marine Biology Web and learn more about lots of topics related to ocean life.