Thursday, November 13, 2008

Fossils from Redcar Beach

John Appleyard is becoming a local fossil expert from his walks on Redcar beach where he has discovered many ancient fossils over the last years. Below are some examples of the artifacts he has uncovered from the beach.

John's exhibits have taken a long time to be in their present presentable form for exhibition.
In his workshop he uses many methods to clean away sedimentary deposits and polish the fossils so we can enjoy their form.

A calcified ammonite fragment - Ammonites existed 400-65 million years ago - this creature would have been around 2 1/2 feet in diameter

Belemnite (related to the squid/cuttlefish) existed juring the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods

Ichthyosaur snout - A Dolphin type reptile that existed between 240 million and 90 milion years ago. Originally land based they eventually moved to the sea.

Nautilus - One of John's finds which still exists today

You can hear Mr Appleyard talk about his discoveries on Redcar beach at the BBC local History Website at this link

Monday, November 10, 2008

Washington DC

I was lucky enough to have to visit Washinton DC last week for my work and it was surprisingly one of the nicest cities I have ever seen.

The most wonderful thing about WDC is that all the museums, art galleries and even the zoo are all free to visit. It is a surprisingly clean city and very international in it's residents.

I didn' t have a lot of time to look around but a free Sunday gave me chance to see a lot and also a lot of blisters to bring home as a momento.

A few pictures an a video of the president flying into the whitehouse follow.

The Washington Memorial

The Whitehouse

Capitol Hill

Mei Xiang in the National Zoological Park