Registered: 1498152365 Posts: 14
Reply with quote #1
So I’m currently staying in a caravan site just on the top of the cliff of Whitecliff bay. I was wondering if anyone has been to the bay (down the very steep path next to the campsite) and if so could you give me some tips on where to look and what fossils I can find where. I believe I’ve found a Belemnite but that was on the off chance as I didn’t know what formation I was looking in. Also is it best to turn left or right at the bottom of the steep pathway? Any tips or guidance is appreciated, thanks.
Reply with quote #2
Not sure about whitecliff bay, and depends what you're after, but Sandown is not far away and beach is good for dinosaur fossils in the yellow/Brown cliff and along shoreline. Summer is difficult time to find anything as less erosion and lots of seaweed but you can still find bits and pieces. Dinosaur isle museum in Sandown has info. The chalk at far end of cliffs (near to whitecliffe bay) has occasional ammonites and marine fossils. Otherwise head over to brook and Hannover point for dinosaur fossils. Dinosaur farm museum arranges trips and will show you where to look. Find them online. Good luck
Registered: 1509472699 Posts: 21
Reply with quote #3
Whitecliff bay is great geologically but not so good paleontologically, however yaverland is just over the other side of culver down and is brilliant on the right conditions. It has the complete cretaceous sequence from the Wessex formation to the White chalk subgroup. As you first get down there from the car park the purple/pink cliffs are made up of the Wessex formation(barremian). The majority of this is undefined except for the Plant debris beds(PDB) which come down to beach level just before the contact with the Vectis formation(black/grey cliffs further on). The plant debris beds is the main source of bone however unless you have been taken down and shown the plant debris beds they are hard to identify. However all the dinosaur bone from the plant debris beds gets washed out and into the gully's and small concentrations of shingle on the foreshore and they are black with a honeycomb structure as they have been washed in by minerals such as iron. As you continue down yaverland you will notice the contact between the Wessex formation and the overlying Vectis formation as a transition from purple/pink/blue clays to black/grey clays. The Vectis formation is hard to identify the members particularly at Sandown as it is on a steep anticline however it is essentially marked by big slabs of the filosina bed/Vectis slabs exposed at the base of the cliff on the foreshore, this yields the gastropods and brachiopods Filosina gregarea and viviparous. It also contains crocodilian fossils, turtle fossils along with fish and Hybodus shark remains in particular shark fin spines. Next will the the lower greensand made up of the Atherfield clay and Ferruginous sands formations, however they are not particularly fossiliferous at yaverland, but do keep an eye out for the brown-green fine muddy sands that are in blocks on the foreshore that do contain some of the most beautiful bivalves in particular Pterotrigonia aliformis and Yaadia nadosa which had since been renamed quadratrigonia. It is definitely worth picking up these bivalves, you have to remember the surface you see exposed will be the bad surface that has been exposed to significant weathering, the rest of bivalve after prep will be incredible..The Atherfield clay formation also has some incredible corals called Holocystis, these can be seen on our third video on our Wight Coast Fossils facebook page, Then you have the chalk group at culver. Generally the White chalk subgroup(upper Chalk) isn't very fossiliferous at culver but you can find some exceptional and large Acanthoceras juxibrownei and A. rhotomangenese ammonites down there in the zig zag chalk formation which can be seen as a very light grey coloured chalk. Hope this is helpful for next time. Jack
Registered: 1249264216 Posts: 542
Reply with quote #4
Hi, I think as the post you are replying to is a couple of months old, the person on holiday at Whitecliff Bay returned homes many weeks ago. Yes the area is geologically good I have found many fossils there so I have to disagree on that part of your reply.
__________________ JW Never ask a star fish for directions
Registered: 1509472699 Posts: 21
Reply with quote #5
Hi, I thought they had I just thought I would post it because it might be useful for the next time they are down. I have found many belemnites and also lots of Gastropods and a shark tooth I think from the London clay. However considering how good the island is for fossils I don't think it is relatively fossiliferous location compared to many others on the island.