National Geographic : 1956 Mar
© National Geographic Society T Once This Palm, Now Brittle Stone, Swayed to Caribbean Breezes The petrified palm came from Antigua. Marine sedi ments buried the speckled bird egg (left) on a Fiji island. There it remained some 20 million years, with shell essentially unaltered, until excavators returned it to a world no longer inhabited by its species. Staff Photographer B. Anthony Stewart + Tree Limb (Left) and Reptile Bone Glow Like Gems-They Are Opalized Australia sent the vertebra of a plesiosaur (right). This swimming reptile became extinct about 60 million years ago. Large specimens attained 40 feet. Nevada yielded the tree branch. In both cases petrifaction replaced organic material with opal.