Sample of Fossils found in the Silica Shale
Similar Devonian Triolbite Collecting Location:
New York Devonian: 18 Mile Creek, Lake Erie Cliffs, Penn Dixie Paleontological Center.
The Trilobite Gallery
See and Learn about Different Trilobites
Fossil Park Area; Sylvania, Lucas Co., OH
~ 370 - 400 Million Years Old
This is your place for Devonian fossil hunting, including Trilobites and Brachiopods!
Trilobite Fossil Hunting in the Devonian of Ohio - Fossil Hunting Information and Identification
"This shows fossil hunters hunting in the Hanson quarry. This quarry is now closed to collectors.
As one can see, the Silica formation is nicely exposed."
"This is a quarry at Paulding. Amy is searching the Silica shale for Devonian fossils."
"Brachiopods are by far the most common fossil. They come in many different shapes and sizes."
About the Silica formation fossils:
In the middle Devonian, a vast sea covered Ohio. The sea floor was very muddy,
creating a remarkable place for fossilization to occur. The Silica Formation in
northwest Ohio represents this marine environment from the middle Devonian; it
leaves a well-preserved and abundant fossil record. The preservation of these
Devonian fossils are among the best in the world. In this formation, one can find
the abundant remains of corals, brachiopods, echinoderms, and trilobites. These
exquisitely preserved fossils are found in soft, gray shale, and quickly weather free from
The Silica formation is only accessible through quarries in the area. Access to these quarries is
restricted, however, the Hanson quarry provides spoil from the Silica formation for a Fossil Park in the area, where
people are welcomed to collect.
A few employees of the Hanson Quarry came up with an idea to allow the public access
to these famous Devonian collecting grounds. They came up with an idea that eventually
became Fossil Park!
Fossil Park is open to the public.
In the park, truckloads of Silica Shale from nearby quarries are dumped into
a few large areas, where the public can simply hand split the shale, and find the same
fossils one can find in the quarries.
Visitors are guaranteed to find brachiopods and corals from the ancient Devonian reef. The more dedicated collectors can find parts of Trilobites, and sometimes
even whole ones.
The Fossil Park is a GREAT place to bring kids!
The park has two dig sites and a trail around the quarry. It is also staffed with knowledgable
people that will help identify your finds.
Families and Groups find lots of fossils, mainly brachiopods and corals.
No tools are allowed to split the shale. If you want to split, get a larger rock and pound the smaller rock with it, like a caveman!
Address: 5675 Centennial Road, Slvania, OH 43560
Fossil Park is directly across the road from the Mayberry Square Plaza
***Important go to the address above, not to the Main Olander Park address, Olander Park is not near the Fossil Park.
GPS Coordinates: 41° 42.8" N, 83° 44.6" W
Fossil Park is open DAILY from the 1st weekend in April to the 2nd weekend in November
Read the Fossil Park sign in the image above for more information.
Fosisl Park is only staffed on the Weekends during the spring and summer months.
No equipment is allowed in Fossil Park. A box and towels are
recommended to store the fossils in.
Although they have shade, restrooms, and water, it still can get VERY hot in the summer.
Dress appropriately and bring items such as a hat, sunscreen, extra water, and a snack.
Silica Shale Book: "Strata and Megafossils of the Middle Devonian Silica Formation"
Robert V. Kesling and Ruth B. Chilman
The FRIENDS, University of Michigan, Museum of Paleontology have reprinted this original Silica Shale book. It was originally printed in 1975.
This book is a must for anyone with an interest in the Silica shale. It is incredibly detailed with TONS of images.
Click here for ordering information. The link has ordering info and sample pictures from the book.
Fossils of Ohio
Feldmann, R. & Hackathorn, M. eds.
Ohio Division of Geological Survey, Bulletin 70.
Culombus, OH. 1996
Again, this book is a must for anyone collecting in Ohio. It has detailed descriptions and images
of 100's of fossils one can find throughout Ohio, including the Silica formation. It can be
ordered through the Ohio Geological Survey.
The Olander Park System: Fossil Park
Official Website for Fossil Park. Go here for more specific information, inlcuding holiday hours, field trip booking, etc...
Crinus - "Fossils" website
This is not a specific site on the fossils of Ohio, but it has incredibly detailed images of countless invertebrate fossils, including fossils from the silica shale.