Mineral & Fossil Co-Op at the Tucson Gem Show - Visiting Vendors

Mineral & Fossil Co-Op is Natural History Up Close and Personal...and For Sale! 

Part One: Temporary Vendors

The Mineral & Fossil Co-Op is Tuscson's permanent exhibit located in a large warehouse in the on Oracle Drive. There are a few anchor vendors that operate throughout the year that are joined by visiting dealers during the main Tucson Gem Show in January and a smaller event held in the fall.

Visiting Vendors

The Bug House

The Bug House is a Utah based company that specializes in selling educational fossil kits, local rock specimens, and sliced geodes mined from Utah. www.thebughouse.net

Dendritic Stone from Utah

Trilobite Educational Kits


Utah Septarian Nodule Geode

Loy Crapo, Owner of the Bug House


The Red Gallery

The Red Gallery is a German company specializing in high quality minerals and fossils for home decor. They set up a temporary showroom at the Co-op every year to sell large amethyst geodes and collectible fossil wall decor. www.redgallery.com




A Rare Fossilized Sea Shrimp

A Rare Fossilized Insect

Red Gallery Storefront

Larson Paleontology

Larson Paleontology are fossil consultants as well as fossil vendors. They will assist buyers with purchasing and appraising their fossil collections. 

Their ammonite collection is particularly beautiful. 



Fossilized Ammonite with the Ammolite still intact


Sahara Overland

Sahara Overland is a Moroccan based fossil retail company that travels to Tucson every year to sell fossils found from their digs in Morocco. In 2015, they housed their show in the Co-Op.

It was a pleasure to see their latest fossil discoveries at the Co-op. They had a large female sea turtle fossil and a smaller baby sea turtle fossil on display. It was found in Sidi Chennane Phosphate Mine in the Ouled Abdoun Basin in the Morocco. This area is famous for it fossil finds, and in fact, the last living African dinosaur was found in the basin last year.

The Ouled Abdoun Basin is a phosphate sedimentary deposit created by an ancient sea millions of years ago. The sea turtles were found while mining for phosphate. Apparently, companies, like Sahara Overland, wait patiently for the call from the mining companies for a new fossil find. The fossil hunters only have a few hours to extract the bones so that the mining operation is not disrupted. 

Sahara Overland's Fossil Exhibit with Alienochelys Selloumi Fossils



Alienochelys Selloumi Specialized Crushing Mouth and Jaws










Plaster recreations of some of the neck vertebrae that were missing from the find.

Sahara Overland Scientist and Excavator, Jnoun Serge

Jnoun explaining how the fossil specimen is put together.




One of the great experiences visiting the Tucson Gem Show is speaking to the actual miners and fossil hunters. They are so knowledgeable and passionate about their work and finds. The experience is so much richer than visiting a museum! www.facebook.com/saharaoverlandLLC/

More Reading

Centre de recherche sur la paléobiodiversité et les paléoenvironnements

Ouled Abdoun Basin




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