Florida Museum of Natural History

Vertebrate Paleontology

Instructions for Completing the Vertebrate Fossil Report Form

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  1. Locality information should be as precise as possible. Give name of river and, if known, approximate distance to nearest landmark, such as a bridge, dam, or town. For example, "Withlacoochee River, between 2 and 3 miles up-stream of SR 200 bridge."
  2. For each locality, list the vertebrate fossil collected in lots sorted by the type of animal. You can use scientific names (such as "Nannippus") or common names (such as "three-toed horse"). For each type of animal, list number of items found, such as "3 teeth, 2 toes, 1 limb bone." Use adjectives such as "partial" and "fragment" when specimens are not complete. For example, the phrase "mammoth tooth" would be taken to mean a complete or nearly complete tooth, while "fragmentary mammoth tooth" would be taken to mean one or a few partial tooth plates.
  3. List only fossils found on lands owned or managed by the State of Florida. Do not list fossils collected on private land.
  4. If you have not collected any vertebrate fossils on State of Florida land other than the teeth of sharks, rays, and skates, or have done no collecting at all, submit a signed and dated report form with the phrase "no applicable fossils collected" listed in the Fossils Collected column.
  5. If you can not identify the specimens you have found, take advantage of the Florida Museum's identification service, or you can post images of the specimens on your own home page and send us the address of the web site, or send us photographs. Finally, if you have a large number of unidentified fossils collected on Florida state lands under a permit, you can request that a representative of the Program of Vertebrate Paleontology visit your residence and identify them for you.
  6. Teeth of sharks, rays, and skates do not have to be reported, nor do fossils of plants or invertebrate animals. However, fossil shark vertebrate and stingray tail spines do have to be reported.
  7. Fossils collected on State of Florida lands under the Program of Vertebrate Paleontology's permiting system remain the property of the State of Florida until sixty (60) days after receipt of a properly filed report form. The fossils can not be discarded, sold, traded, or defaced until sixty (60) days after receipt by the Program of Vertebrate Paleontology of a properly filed report form. After sixty days, the permittee can dispose of the fossils as they wish, unless they have been requested in writing (either by mail or e-mail) to turn over one or more specimens to the Florida Museum of Natural History who will house the specimens for the State in its permanent research collection.
  8. Individuals who knowingly misrepresent or omit significant discoveries on their report form are in violation of Florida Statute 1004.576 and subject to the legal and civil penalties listed in that statute.

Up-dated February 17, 2007