While I have many sources of limestone locally, this specimen of Fenestella was one of my first finds in a new location. A ridge of limestone cropped out just 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 to be 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.