Friday, 17 January 2014

Day 3 of the Great Fossil Hunt

So with the better half working from home today I decided to head down to the beach to give her (and me) some peace and quiet. It was just before lunch and I intended to just head for a walk for an hour or so. Handily the beach is only about a five minute drive for me.

So I packed up and headed down to the beach where the weather had cleared up again from earlier in the day. So far, that's three days and three cracking days of weather... well no rain anyway which is always a positive. The beach was clear of anyone nearby, just a couple of dog walkers in the distance and I didn't feel so much of a weirdo walking about looking at stones as I have done in the past...

I figure that the more I look, the more likely I am to spot something, it's just learning what I should be looking for more than anything else at this point. I know that the local area geology is Carboniferous sedimentary rocks (which from what I can gather is sandstone, shale and coal. Great.. I just need to work out if these billions of stones on the beach are what I'm looking for.

I walked my 'usual' route (usual in that it's twice I've done it now) towards and past the local castle we have here which is built on the coast. I really had no success and I thought I was doing worse than day two but in retrospect I think I just thought I was doing better than I truly was back then.

A decent walk and some fresh air and I decided to head back to the car, looking at various rocks and seeing if any look like they could have anything on them. On the way back I picked up a stone and thought "Meh, nothing" and dropped it. As it landed it split open and I figured I'd have a look... "Oh... Haaaang on a minute" and I looked closer... Quite a clear tube shape ran through the split and upon getting it home, cleaning it up a bit and posting it online to get some input it appears I've found my first true fossil!

This my dear friends looks like it could be part of a fairly common plant from the Carboniferous era - A lycopid ( ). No idea on age, but it's into the millions of years I guess due to it being in the stone. It's a couple of inches long and it's much clearer in person, you can see the texture of the branch/stem type thingy.

So all in all, well chuffed. I have potentially found my first fossil and while it's 'just a plant bit' it's more than I've ever had before.. Can't wait until next Friday now where I think I'll head out again.

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