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Hi Everyone!

 

I'm new to the group so please bear with me if I am repeating a question.  We have just moved to Switzerland and my son LOVES looking for bugs, animals and fossils.  I saw a post from 2012 about Laufen having a good site to find fossils. Please could Jps or anyone else contact me (I haven't found the PM function yet) to let me know where this site is.  Can we take the fossils home that we find?  We possibly found a fossil with a fish fin or trilobite on it whilst hiking yesterday near Nenzlingen, we left it there as we weren't sure if we were allowed to take it or not.  Could we go back and get it? Who would we get to ID them and should we be offering them to museums or universities or are the ones we'll find very common?

 

Thanks so much in advance for your help and your patience :)

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Ludwigia

It depends on which Canton you find fossils what you are or are not allowed to do with them. Your best bet for information is for you and your son to visit the nearest natural science museum and have a talk with one of the resident paleontologists. Depending on where you live, there are good museums in Zurich, Basel and Aathal.

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Yes, Switzerland's rules are canton-specific.  Ticino does not allow fossil collecting, Solothurn does, but anything remarkable should be reported.  I can't remember the rules in the Jura.  These are the three that I looked into.   

The site near Laufen is called Liesberg

https://www.glocals.com/things-to-do/events_view/basel/58679.htm

PM me and I can send you more details.  (Click on my name and there will be a Message button to hit.) 

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pachy-pleuro-whatnot-odon
On 8/24/2021 at 8:38 PM, jpc said:

 

Here's some more information on the Liesberg site. Although it's listed on the Dutch counterpart to TFF, I wasn't aware of its existence. However, as it's only about 2 hours drive from where I live and I already have a vignet for Switzerland for this year, I might actually see if I can get over there some time.

 

Another site that might be nice to visit in the north of Switzerland is Frick. Unfortunately, you can't really search the quarry yourself, as there's on-going academic research being done there (as well as the quarry still being active, I believe). But there's a small spot where rocks from the quarry are occasionally dumped for people to search through. In addition, I believe some museums also bring their excess collections there for interested parties to pick up. So it's definitely worth a visit. As is the small museum dedicated to this important site known for its plateosaurs.

 

Also keep in mind that even if you're not able or allowed to take a fossil, you can still photograph (and, if you've got the capability, geo-tag) it, so that the find gets recorded, you might still be able to get it identified, and can share it with your friends :)

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I have not been to Frick, but it was on the list of places to visit on my Covid cancelled History of Paleo class.  There is supposedly a rock pile where you can indeed find fossils.  Google it.  

 

For those who are wondering why pachy-etc mentions the vignette, Switzerland makes you get a sticker for the car just to cross the border.  It is not cheap.  

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pachy-pleuro-whatnot-odon
19 hours ago, jpc said:

I have not been to Frick, but it was on the list of places to visit on my Covid cancelled History of Paleo class.  There is supposedly a rock pile where you can indeed find fossils.  Google it.

 

Oh, the blocks are there - don't worry about that :oO: They're just huge and extremely hard, much like most of the Triassic rocks I've encountered here in Europe so far, in particular the Muschelkalk (with the exception of the deposits at Winterswijk, which were comparatively soft, if childhood memory serves me right). You won't achieve much with a regular hammer and chisel - at least I didn't - so you'll probably like to at least take a heavy sledgehammer, crowbar, or otherwise start throwing rocks at rocks (which I personally find somewhat of a dangerous practice, seeing as how uncontrolled this frequently is). In any case, you won't easily get anything out of the blocks, so I, unfortunately, can't tell you what they contain. However, somewhat removed from the main "Klopfplatz"/dumping area, I found a smaller, sizeable boulder with a number of Gryphea sp. on the one side and a huge bivalve on the other, which matrix seems to correspond to that of the quarry, as well as the bigger blocks of stone at the freely accessible site. It's quite possible that these big blocks contain like marine fossils...

 

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For those who are wondering why pachy-etc mentions the vignette, Switzerland makes you get a sticker for the car just to cross the border.  It is not cheap.

 

No, it isn't (cheap). I needed it for a prep-class that got shifted around continuously due to Covid, so am now looking for ways to make good use of it still till the year's over :) There should still be an interesting exposition in the placoderms of Spitsbergen in Fribourg that is liked to visit, but Liesberg would make a great additional excursion ;)

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Ludwigia

I find that €38,50 for a whole year is not bad at all. That's cheaper than a hotel room for one night.

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pachy-pleuro-whatnot-odon

€40 at the border... But,  yes, you're right, in practice it's not much. It's just a lot if you only need to enter the country once in that year, e.g. for just a day - which makes it feel like a lot. Soon once you've bought a vignette, you'll probably want to use it more than once.

 

In that respect, the Austrian system is much more attuned to people visiting only for short periods in the year. Then again, if you travel through France end to end using péage/toll roads, you'll easily spend way more. So everything is relative when it comes down to it :)

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@hi_d

 

I am not a big fan of the Frick "Klopfplatz". The main reason is that the fossils are enclosed in super hard rock and it is difficult to get them out. Especially for kids.

 

One kid-friendly site (not far from Frick) is at the "Steinbruch Schümel" at Holderbank.

Park the car at the village and walk up to the very end (!) of the Steinbruch. On the left side, there is a rock face which is constantly weathered and therefore is exposing new stuff. You can find marine fossils from the Jurrasic there. Mostly ammonites. The rock is soft/brittle and you can surface collect without any tools.

 

Even if you do not find stuff its a nice place for a walk, picnic or grill a cervelat. :rolleyes:

You can keep all the fossils that you find. Just remember to keep the place clean since it is a natural reserve.

 

Directions:

http://www.schuemel-naturschutz.ch/angebot_wander.html

 

 

 

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