News Feed

The latest news and updates from the Burgess Shale Geoscience Foundation!

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The 2016 guided hike schedule is finalized and we are open for Registration.
If the dates on our schedule do not work for you, please call us to discuss a private tour
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What our customers have to say

Still undecided about registering for a guided hike this summer? Click here to read some of the feedback from our hiking clients and Geo-Walk participants.

Listen to Simon Conway Morris in a recent Palaeocast

Listen to an interview that was recorded in June of this year. Simon Conway Morris discusses the Burgess Shale, the Cathedral Escarpment and the discovery of other fossil sites in Yoho and Kootenay National Parks. He provides his thoughts on the relevance that this site holds after more than a century and in light of more recent Cambrian fossil lagerstätte discoveries. The Palaeocast can be accessed here.

Hallucigenia re-described with a grinning mouth

Martin Smith and Jean Bernard Caron's re-description of Hallucigenia was published in the journal Nature on June 25. A great deal has been learned about the arrangement of the mouth an eyes of this creature thanks to imaging with a variety of lighting techniques and by the use of electron microscopy. View a video on Jean Bernard Caron's blog

Yawunik kootenayi

In March 2015 PhD candidate Cédric Aria and his supervisor Jean-Bernard Caron published a description of a new leancholiid arthropod named Yawunik kootenayi. The species was discovered in 2012 at the Marble Canyon Fossil site in Kootenay National Park.
Read more about the characteristics of this creature and how it was named.

See where we've been on Facebook

Have a look at recent photos from the neighbourhood of Field BC on our Facebook page. No login is required to view photos.

Where are the Marble Canyon specimens?

Dr. Jean-Bernard Caron takes viewers behind the scenes to see the new Marble Canyon fossil specimens as they are unpacked, prepared and stored at the Royal Ontario Museum. He also shows examples of fossils that will be displayed in the Dawn of Life Gallery. Click here to view the videos, uploaded courtesy of The Globe and Mail.


Here's a 2015 reading recommendation. Four Billion Years and Counting: Canada's Geological Heritage describes the geological history of Canada and how the geology of Canada impacts the way we live. Take a close look at any one of our modern conveniences and there's a connection to geology: the metals and quartz mineral in a wristwatch, the plastics in appliances and the fossil fuels in the gas tanks of our vehicles. Geological processes are behind natural hazards such as earthquakes and landslides.

Aug. 21, 2014 Update on ROM's discovery of soft-bodied Burgess Shale-type fossils in Kootenay National Park

The CBC visited the new fossil site on August 21. View the video.
Wonderfully preserved specimens of Metaspriggina from the Marble Canyon site have allowed Conway Morris and Caron to redescribe this very early fish and to interpret clues about the early evolution of fish.

Isotelus rex - the world's largest trilobite

Check out the Burgess Shale's replica of the world's largest trilobite measuring approximately 100 cm long by 51 cm wide. Below is an excerpt from an article written when it was found in 1998.

The giant trilobite represents a new species of the genus Isotelus. Elias notes: "This remarkable discovery adds to our knowledge of biodiversity following the Ordovician evolutionary radiation, one of the greatest diversifications in the history of life. The huge species existed just before the end of the Ordovician Period, when Isotelus and many but not all other trilobites disappeared in a great mass extinction. Studies of these events help us understand more about global environmental changes and their effects on the biosphere."