Tag: Northern Ireland

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Waterloo Bay

Just outside of Larne town centre and north of Larne harbour, Co. Antrim is Waterloo Bay, where important exposures of Triassic and Jurassic rocks can be found, specifically the Waterloo Mudstone Formation, part of the Lias Group. Although the Triassic Penarth Group rocks are not particularly fossiliferous, the blue lias yields early Jurassic fossils including ammonites, belemnites and gryphaea. The cliffs and platforms are protected however many washed out loose fossils can be found. Jurassic, Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦

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Hook Head (Non-UK)

Southeast of Waterford and southwest of Wexford is the Hook Head peninsula, which is remarkable for the abundant, beautifully preserved Carboniferous fossils, at its furthest reach by the Hook Lighthouse. The outcrops around Hook Head consist of abundant exposures of Lower Carboniferous rocks in foreshore platforms, containing beautifully preserved crinoids, bryozoans, bivalves, corals and brachiopods. The cliffs and platforms are protected, but many loose fragments can be found containing significant numbers of jumbled fossils of all types, with superbly preserved detail.Carboniferous, Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦♦

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White Park Bay

Ten kilometres northwest of Ballycastle in Co. Antrim is White Park Bay. Successive layers of rock yield Mesozoic fossils including ammonites, belemnites and Gryphaea. However, the cliffs and platforms are protected, but many loose blocks containing fossils and some washed out fossils can be found. The beach is also known as one of the few places in the world to have “singing sand” – when conditions are right, the extremely fine sand vibrates to make a humming noise. The location is also known as a historic manufacturing hub for flint axes and arrow heads, due to the abundance of flint nodules found in the cliffs, with artefacts dating back as far as 8,000 BC. The landscape also features passage tombs looking out over the sea, where, on a clear day, the coast of Scotland can be seen.Cretaceous, Jurassic, Foreshore, Rating: ♦♦♦