Delaware Geology

State Fossil: Belemnite

State Fossil - Belemnite

On July 2, 1996, belemnite was named as the official fossil of Delaware. The Martin Luther King, Jr. Elementary School (Wilmington) third grade Quest students of Kathy Tidball suggested honoring the ancient and noble belemnite as our State fossil.

The belemnite was, in essence, a squid with a conical shell. It is an extinct member of the phylum Mollusca, which includes clams, snails, squids and octopuses. Belemnite fossils can be easily found along the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal, which is where the Quest Students collected specimens during a field trip.

Delaware Code Title 29 § 314

State Mineral: Sillimanite

State Mineral - Sillimanite

Sillimanite is widespread throughout the schists of the Delaware Piedmont and occurs as large masses and steam-rounded boulders at the Brandywine Springs State Park. Sillimanite is suitable for lapidary work and under the name Fibrolite, it was recognized by geologists in Delaware prior to 1830.

Delaware Code Title 29 § 310

State Seashell: Channeled Whelk

State Seashell: Channeled Whelk

The channeled whelk is a very large predatory sea snail belonging to the family Buccinidae. Shells of the channeled whelk typically reach 5 to 8 inches in length. The shell is smooth and subpyriform (generally pear-shaped), with a large body whorl and a straight siphonal canal. Between the whorls there is a wide, deep channel at the suture, and there are often weak knobs at the shoulders of the whorls. Finely sculpted lines begin at the siphonal canal and revolve around the shell surface.

Delaware Code Title 29 § 324

State Soil: Greenwich Loam

 State Soil - Greenwich Loam

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Since Greenwich loam (a coarse, loamy, mixed, semiactive, mesic, Typic Hapludult) is commonly found in all counties in Delaware and enhances water quality, agriculture, wildlife habitat, and natural landscape beauty, it was adopted as the State soil on April 20, 2000.

Delaware Code Title 29 § 316


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