Red Petrified Wood Round from Australia
Pinophyta, Class Pinopsida
Time: Miocene (30 mya)
Fossil is 9” x 6 1/2”
Miles, Queensland, Australia
The petrified wood common to this area of Australia is known
as 'Chinchilla Red' because of its unique color and quality of
preservation. Take note of the spectacular preservation of the
tree rings and cellular structure. Most petrified wood loses
these structural components during the process of petrification.
This finely polished and lustrous specimen shows a wide array
of colorful red, brown, and tan hues. It would make a unique
decorative piece, or splendid addition to your fossil collection.
Petrified wood is the name given to a special type of fossilized
remains of terrestrial vegetation. It is the result of a tree having
turned completely into stone by the process of permineralization.
All the organic materials have been replaced with minerals (mostly
a silicate, such as quartz), while retaining the original structure
of the wood. The petrifaction process occurs underground, when
wood becomes buried under sediment and is initially preserved due
to a lack of oxygen, which inhibits aerobic decomposition. Mineral-laden
water flowing through the sediment deposits minerals in the plant's
cells; as the plant's lignin and cellulose decay, a stone mold
forms in its place. In general, wood takes less than 100 years
to petrify. The organic matter needs to become petrified before
it decomposes completely.