Found metallic balls of some type of metal ore surrounded by yellow mudstone the metallic balls crush easily into a fine gray powder.

The gray balls are situated between sandstone layers in a soft sandstone or mudstone layer.

The balls are coated in a rust like surface but are non-magnetic.

I am not a scientist just a working guy trying to figure out what's on my property.

These were found in Southern Utah (USA) in Kane County.

Thanks in advance


Metallic Balls

metal ore

Another Example 1

Another Example 2


closed as off-topic by user12525, trond hansen, BillDOe, arkaia, Semidiurnal Simon Sep 2 at 4:23

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    $\begingroup$ This may or may not be a unique phenomenon. In case it is unique, the location where the spheroids were found may help those who might be able to answer this question. $\endgroup$ – Fred Feb 13 at 8:27
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    $\begingroup$ I should have put the location in they are found in Southern Utah in Kane County. $\endgroup$ – Rolling7s Feb 13 at 17:27
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    $\begingroup$ @Rolling7s please add how hard they are. What scratches them? There is a vote to close this question due to not having all of the needed details. I hope this link is helpful. I do see in your comments that you have added where you found them. I have taken the liberty to add that to the actual question so that people don't miss it and vote to close again. earthscience.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/124/… $\endgroup$ – L.B. Feb 15 at 15:12
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    $\begingroup$ Thank you for the help and suggestions on how to identify my mineral. First the hardness the nodules or balls break up easily into a fine baby powder texture with just a few pounds pressure. I am attaching new photos into the main question showing the powdered remains of one of the balls. Second the odd thing is neither water nor vinegar will oxidize the balls or dust after crushing? $\endgroup$ – Rolling7s Feb 17 at 6:08
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    $\begingroup$ Sorry I went back to add the photos showing the softness and powder but it will not let me add more photos. $\endgroup$ – Rolling7s Feb 17 at 6:15

They are called concretions early stage by appearance, which are a chemical deposit that can form around even a microscopic particle with different chemical properties than the sediment around it. The difference in charge usually causes dissolved minerals to precipitate out around it which of course magnifies the effect. You can even see the different colored halos caused by different minerals being precipitated out. Some differ drastically in hardness from the surrounding material and end up eroding out.

You see them in any porous rock and in many forms of soil. sometimes they form around a flake of organic matter or a random bit of dust, but occasionally you can find a small fossil at the center.

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    $\begingroup$ The actual materials of concretions very wildly, Orange is almost certainly iron oxide (which is not magnetic) and the light might be calcium carbonate, but without testing or the actual formation It is hard to say. they are almost certainly not a single material , nearly any material that is soluble in water can make up a concretion. $\endgroup$ – John Feb 13 at 18:38
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    $\begingroup$ Thanks to Camilo Rada and Fred I know know what they are "Concretions" or eventually will be in a few more million years. LOL. Moqui (pronounced "Mo-Key") Marbles consist of a sandstone center covered by a shell of hematite, an iron ore. They can be as small as an toy marble, or as large as eight inches in diameter. The majority of Moqui Marbles come from Utah’s Navajo Sandstone Formation (now part of Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument) $\endgroup$ – Rolling7s Feb 13 at 18:48

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