Indonesian Fossil Coral
Fossil coral is such an amazing creation in nature. When I first discovered this mineral, it was love at first sight. I've been incorporating it in my jewelry designs ever since. I am fascinated with stones that have a little background story, and this one certainly does.
Fossilized coral, also known as agatized coral or petrified coral, is a completely natural stone. It forms over millions of years as ancient coral is slowly replaced with agate preserving the original circular, geometric and flower patterns. Some of the oldest known coral goes back as far as 500 million years!
Among other places, fossil coral has been mainly found in Indonesia and the United States. All fossil corals are uniquely beautiful, but the most desirable pieces come from Indonesia. The original coral was usually part of a larger reef ecosystem which died off over time due to natural earthy events.
Indonesian fossil coral is estimated to be around 20 million years old, and thought to have formed from a volcanic event. The skeleton of the original coral was then replaced with agate and other minerals hardening and solidifying the original coral form which can be seen today. These stones make beautiful lapidary material which is then cut and polished into beads and pendants for use in jewelry.
I'm always on the lookout for some top notch specimens and make sure to snatch them up when I see them. I think we can all appreciate the result of nature preserving itself over millions of years.