Boring Molluscs

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THE following extract from Prof. Joseph Leidy's paper on “Vertebrate Remains, chiefly from the Phosphate Beds of South Carolina,” which appeared in NATURE, vol. xx. p. 354, will serve in aid of the solution of the still open question, By what means do the boring molluscs penetrate hard rocks?—“The fossils mainly consist of the harder parts of the skeleton and of teeth, usually more or less water-worn, indicating shallow seas and an active surf to which they were exposed. Many of them exhibit the drilling effects of boring molluscs, especially those which are supposed to have been derived from the tertiary marl rock, the operation of drilling apparently having been performed both before and during the time the fossils were imbedded in the rock. Only enamel, or the enamel-like dentinal layer such as is found investing the crown of the teeth of sharks, appears to have been a protection against the drilling power of the borers.”

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STOKOE, P. Boring Molluscs. Nature 20, 428 (1879) doi:10.1038/020428b0

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