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Petrified Wood Found in Australia Reveals Rare Turquoise Opal

Margaret Tionquiao

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  • A piece of petrified wood containing a rare turquoise opal was recently discovered in Australia.
  • The rare turquoise opal found its way into fame after it was posted on Reddit.
  • It’s not uncommon to discover wood opal, but the fine play-of-color in this particular piece made it a stunner.
  • The post regarding the stunning gemstone went viral, amassing hundreds of thousand of upvotes on Reddit.

A piece of petrified wood containing a rare turquoise opal recently discovered in outback Winton, Queensland in Australia made its way into fame within online communities, all thanks to a viral post from Reddit user adymma90.

Opal stones have long been famed for their unique features and bright colors. It is an expensive stone, with the rarest ones appearing in dark shades. It is most commonly found in Australia, a place well-known for having developed its opal industry in the 1890s. As a precious stone, opal has long been used in jewelry and crystal therapy for its ability to balance energies in the human body.

petrified-wood-opal

The turquoise opal discovered in Australia, however, is not your common opal stone. It was a wood opal – a fossilized wood with a portion of its original structure replicated by opal silicate through a lengthy natural petrifaction. Though it is not as rare as the black or the boulder opal stones, this turquoise opal stone is just as stunning with its fine play-of-color uncommon in wood opal specimens. It is also of particular interest since the petrified wood was substituted entirely, except for the partially retained outer structure.

A cross-section of a piece of petrified wood limb displaying growth rings, cellular structure, and external bark.
petrified-wood

Though petrified wood opal is not necessarily rare, particularly in locations with volcanic and sedimentary deposits or coal seams, it is still valued as a gemstone. Its opalescent sheen and highly diverse shape and form remain a noteworthy inspiration for many artists and authors. It really is not difficult to see why Australia, among others, built specialized mines to get as much opal as possible.

An image of accumulated petrified logs, much like the ones with the turquoise opal, taken in a gulley at Petrified Forest National Park.
petrified-wood-opal

In any case, this particular piece of petrified wood opal both mesmerized and perplexed the online community, resulting in a hundred thousand upvotes on Reddit. Its beautiful turquoise color radiating from its outer wood structure makes it a real organic gem – a clearly resplendent reminder of how beautiful nature can really be.

petrified-wood-opal

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