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Scottish Fossil Code

Fossils – an irreplaceable and finite resource – can inform science, education and recreation if collectors follow the Scottish Fossil Code.

Fossil collecting is an essential activity that provides the basic material and data for the science of palaeontology. New finds add to our record of past life and environments on our planet.

But Scotland’s fossil resource is at risk of abuse and damage, and so must be safeguarded and managed to ensure its survival for future generations.

The Nature Conservation (Scotland) Act 2004 included provision for Scottish Natural Heritage to prepare the Scottish Fossil Code.

Read the Scottish Fossil Code

Find out more about fossils in Scotland.

About the Code

The Code sets out best practice for collecting, identifying, conserving and storing fossil specimens found in Scotland.

It also aims to boost public interest in Scotland’s fossil heritage and promote this resource for scientific, educational and recreational purposes.

The Code was produced with the help of:

  • paleontological researchers
  • land managers
  • fossil collectors
  • others with an interest in Scotland’s fossil heritage

Following the Code will:

  • increase the personal interest and satisfaction that can be gained from creating a fossil collection
  • help to conserve the fossil heritage of Scotland

Find out more

Scottish Fossil Code leaflet