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Fall 2023: Recent and Upcoming Activities

Paid VicPS members wll have received an email with the following information, and more detal about upcoming planned field trips.

Sept 10th Fieldtrip, Cowichan Head, Saanich

We had beautiful weather this past weekend putting our eyes to work for the RBCM to supplement the Cowichan Head Pleistocene collection with some new material that has eroded from the bluffs over the past season (see photos on the VicPS Facebook page). Dr. Richard Hebda gave us an overview (and for some, a refresher) of the relative ages of each strata, and where the marine became deltaic, etc. up through time. He pointed out the various ‘zones’ along the beach where macrofossils, plant material and marine fossils are likely to be collected, and reminded us that, in the macrofossil zone, look for bright white (bone) and black (tooth material). We did not find more fish (like the beautiful specimen posted to Nanaimo Group Fossils Facebook page last month, and in short order delivered to the RBCM), but we did find what Dr. Hebda identified as fish coprolite. Derek left with a heavier pack containing a handful of plant specimens, a feeding trace and a few tiny bone bits, and we all took away a wealth of information about the history of the bluffs and what current interpretations reveal about environmental change here on the Peninsula over that past 100,000+ years.  A big shout out to newest member, Logan, for scoring the BEST find of the day…a small piece of wood perfect for carbon-dating.  Logan, we’ll make sure you hear what the research on your discovery reveals!

October 15th Fieldtrip

This is the date for our next planned field trip. Details to follow once confirmed. Also, look for an announcement on a joint field trip of VicPS and VIPS to make up for one that was cancelled last year.

September 20th Meeting IN PERSON!

We begin our fall meetings with an IN-PERSON MEET & GREET and SHOW & TELL! We have not had a show and tell since COVID began in 2020, so please bring AS MUCH MATERIAL AS YOU CAN and let’s see what we can identify. Details of time and place to follow. Finding a room we can afford has been a challenge and your Council are checking out a few.  If anyone is aware of a room big enough for 15-20, Internet enabled, please advise.

We will also hold a VicPS Director’s meeting on September 20th, after which we will hold a Symposium wrap-up meeting (date pending) and report out on the Symposium outcomes, including financials.

October 21st, BCPA AGM

The BCPA will hold its AGM in October. We will share the insights we get into what’s happening across BC with you after the meeting.

Welcome back from summer, and please watch for further emails with details on the planned activities above.

14th BC Paleontological Symposium 2023

June 9-12, 2023
Bob Wright Centre, University of Victoria, Victoria, BC, Canada

On the traditional territory of the lək̓wəŋən peoples, the Songhees, Esquimalt and W̱SÁNEĆ, whose historical relationships with the land continue to this day.

Enjoy 2 keynote speakers, 15 presentations, 4 posters, 3 tours, 2 workshops and unlimited opportunities to network. Details here: 14th British Columbia Paleontological Symposium 2023


You have a few more days. $145 CDN, $95.00 for students. 14th BC Paleontological Symposium Registration, Fri, 9 Jun 2023 at 8:00 AM | Eventbrite


Check to make sure you registered for ALL activities (tours, workshops, fieldtrips). 14th BC Paleontological Symposium Registration, Fri, 9 Jun 2023 at 8:00 AM | Eventbrite

All registrants will receive a detailed itinerary following close of registration.


Visit our website Victoria Palaeontology Society | We dig deep (
For specific inquiries email or contact Jerri Wilkins at 250-812-3970.
Follow us on Facebook Victoria Palaeontology Society | Facebook

VicPS presents Wednesday, April 12th 7:30pm: “Exploring Paleontology: From Finding a Dinosaur to Seeing it on Display”

VicPS members will have received an email that invites them to join our monthly online presentation, compliments of the UVic Speaker’s Bureau. On Wednesday, April 12th at 7:30pm, please welcome:

Ms. Emily Cross, Graduate Student, School of Earth & Ocean Sciences, as she presents

Exploring Paleontology:
From Finding a Dinosaur to Seeing it on Display

This presentation covers the steps from finding a fossil to seeing it on display. It delves into what kinds of tools paleontologists use and examples of interesting research. It also examines what museum collections are like and the work needed to get exhibits ready for display. The presentation also covers different fossilization environments and different types of fossil preservation.

VicPS members should reference the aforementioned email for instructions and links to join this April 12th Zoom presentation.

Symposium workshop: “Sutures, Septas and Siphuncles:  Identifying Ammonites with Ease”

As the 14th BC Paleontological Symposium approaches, our planned activities are being better defined, as this workshop on identifying ammonites in BC shows:

If you want to know your Bostrychoceras from your Glyptoxoceras, this workshop’s for you! Ammonites are the most abundant fossil cephalopods on the planet. With over 1,500 recorded genera and 10,000 species, identification can be daunting. In this 2-hour, hand-on workshop, BCPA Chair Dan Bowen will share tips and tricks for ammonite identification including basic terminology, morphology and key diagnostic characteristics as they relate to the most common ammonites found in BC. Test your new-found skills on workshop specimens, or bring your own specimens for practice.

VicPS Monthly Meeting: March 8, 7:30 pm

Please join us March 8, 7:30PM at our regularly scheduled monthly meeting for an update on the following:

FOSSIL FAIR – TENTATIVELY Sat., March 25, 2023

Swan Lake Nature Sanctuary recently confirmed they do want to partner with us on the Fossil Fair this year on Saturday, March 25th.  That’s only a few weeks away!  Our ability to respond depends upon our volunteer capacity.  If you’re available that weekend, please consider volunteering.  VicPS President Jerri Wilkins will briefly review what’s involved so that VicPS as a group can decide if we have the capacity to proceed.


Usually there is no March field trip due to efforts focused on the annual Fossil Fair.  If the Fossil Fair doesn’t go forward, we’ll plan a field trip. 


Registrations and Abstracts are coming in and the Symposium is on track to be a fulsome four-day event. VicPS President Jerri Wilkins will present a behind-the-scenes peek into how the event is shaping up and will play out. This is primarily for members who are not involved in planning, to see what the planning team’s been up to, and where your talents will be needed as we get closer to June.

All paid VicPS members will have received details as to how to connect to and participate in this virtual meeting. Please contact Jerri Wilkins at our vicpalaeo gmail address for these same details, if needed.

14th BC Paleontological Symposium: ABSTRACTS DEADLINE LOOMS

Thank you to those in the paleontology community who have submitted Abstracts for the 14th British Columbia Paleontological Symposium. Abstracts will continue to be accepted until midnight this Friday, March 3rd, 2023.

If additional time is required, please contact organizers at as soon as possible to arrange an extension.

Paleontology presentations or posters which relate to the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples are welcomed and encouraged, as are presentations on other changes significant to the field of paleontology.