LAWRENCE | Graduate paleontology students from the University of Kansas are joining an effort to have an ancient sea creature named the state's official fossil.
A fossilized Xiphactinus (zih-FAK'-tih-nus) or "X-fish" will be with the students Wednesday as they gather signatures on campus for a petition in support of the state fossil effort.
Later Wednesday, the fossil will go on display at a Lawrence store called the Wild Territory, which also is gathering signatures.
Kansas fossil hunter Alan Detrich found the fossil in western Kansas and wants to donate it to the state.
Detrich repeatedly pursued the state fossil designation for the X-fish. In October, Republican state Rep. Tom Sloan of Lawrence announced that he will introduce X-fish legislation in the upcoming session.