While I have many sources of limestone locally, this specimen of Fenestella was one of my first finds in a new location. A limestone ridge cropped above the stream across the valley floor to the other side. So, while I’ve likely encountered many bryozoans in limestone, this is the first specimen I found worth exploring.
A non-coral Lace Coral
With a common name of lace coral, it is coral-like but truly a Bryozoan. Species from the phylum Bryozoa typically form colonies of cloned creatures called zooids. These are, on average, 1/2 a millimeter in length and filter feed from the ocean water. Each tiny opening in the fossil, the entrance to a zooecium, is the home for each zooid.