Friday, February 22, 2013
I heard rumors that fossil sand dollars could be found hiding in the cliffs around Waipataki. I was very excited. I've always had an interest in fossils and how they become stone and where they end up. The above beauty was on top of a newly fallen chunk of cliff. What always amazes me me is how this sand dollar is possibly millions of years old yet looks the same as one that has been recently washed up on the beach. I could see many other specimens higher up the cliff. This is interesting because another rumor I heard was that Waipataki beach was the epicenter for the 1931 Napier earthquake. This suggests that one possible reason for the fossils being so high up the cliff is through ground uplift. Or it may also be the ocean level dropping. Whatever the cause, we are lucky to be able have a glimpse into the past.