Kansas Fossils

Photo of fossil-laden rock in person's hand

Among the many fossils in this rock is a spiral-shaped gastropod, or snail. Click here for more information about this fossil site near Topeka.

Kansas rocks are full of fossils. In the rock pictured above, all the fossils are invertebrates, animals without backbones. Although vertebrate fossils are also common in Kansas rocks, particularly in the Niobrara Chalk of the Smoky Hills, invertebrate fossils are much more numerous.

From the Flint Hills to the east, small invertebrate fossils (crinoids, corals, fusulinids, bryozoans, to name a few) are widespread in the limestones that crop out in roadcuts and stream banks. In the Smoky Hills region, the Fencepost limestone is loaded with clams and the Niobrara Chalk contains clams, oysters, as well as larger vertebrates, including fishes, sharks, and large swimming reptiles called mosasaurs and plesiosaurs.

Find out more about these Kansas fossils...

ammonoid drawing Ammonoids   clam drawing Bivalves   brachiopod drawing Brachiopods
bryozoan drawing Bryozoans   coral drawing Corals   crinoid drawing Crinoids
fusulinid cross section Fusulinids   gastropod drawing Gastropods   insect drawing Insects
sponge drawing Sponges     trilobite drawing Trilobites  

Check out the Oceans of Kansas web site for more information on the Cretaceous fossils of Kansas.