Tools for Collecting Fossils
- Hard hat. Important in the field where rock strata occur overhead.
- Safety glasses. Your eyes must be protected from rock chips when using a hammer or chisel.
- Gloves to protect your hands.
- Hammer. A bricklayer's hammer will work well.
- One or two chisels, preferably one large and one small.
- Backpack or cloth bag in which to carry the fossils.
- Old newspapers or a roll of tissue paper for protecting fragile specimens.
- Magnifying glass or hand lens, 3× to 10× power.
- Pencils and paper for labeling the specimens. Much of the value of a particular fossil lies in knowing where it was found and the bed it came from. Keep records of your collecting.
- A good map is very helpful as a record of the location of your fossil-collecting sites. Maps that show the shape of the landscape, as well as roads, houses, and rivers, are called topographic maps. They can be purchased for a moderate price at your state or federal geological survey offices.
The printed version of Guide for Beginning Fossil Hunters can be purchased from the Shop ISGS Web site.
Updated 09/23/2011 SLD