Fossiliferous fun

Our Science Club members had a blast on their summer field trip to Whitby hunting for fossils. Don’t worry if you missed out on all the fun, here’s our handy guide to fossil hunting. 

Planning: Choose a site. This fossil hunting website tells you where to hunt and gives you tips on what you might find there. If you’re heading to the coast make sure you check the tides too.

Be prepared: Take food, drink, suitable footwear and clothing to protect you from the weather. If there are unstable cliffs hard hats are recommended.

Equipment: You don’t need any fancy equipment, just a keen pair of eyes and bag to put your finds in. A camera is good to take a picture of any fossils that are too big to carry home. A hand lens or magnifying glass might be useful if you have one. We don’t advise using a geological hammer unless someone has shown you how to do so safely.

Care of sites: Look after fossil sites and don’t hammer cliff faces, not only is it dangerous to you, but many are Sites of Special Scientific Interest which are protected by the law. The best finds are often on the beach where the sea has picked them out of the cliffs for you!

I’ve found one! What is it?: You can use books or websites to help identify your fossil. If you’re stuck you can always ask an expert from the Natural History Museum.

Show and tell: Show your friends, family and teachers. Science Club members: don’t forget to bring your fossil along to the next session, we’d love to see it!

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