Paleonet: Life has just got easier for palaeontologists working with UK macrofossil types.....

Howe, Michael P.A. mhowe at
Thu Jul 24 13:33:14 GMT 2014

Life has just got easier for palaeontologists working with UK macrofossil types.....

British macrofossil types held by many of the British type holding institutions are now on a single database at<> .

The Jisc GB3D Fossil Types Online Project has made good progress over the past few months in loading further images and 3d digital models to the Types Database and the website was formally launched to the academic and museum communities at the recent SPNHC (Society for the Preservation of Natural History Collections) meeting in Cardiff. The presentation may be viewed at:

As well as providing the basic information about all the British type macrofossils (IDs, localities, age, lithostratigraphy, collectors, bibliography, registration numbers, etc) in the partner organisations - roughly 17,500 specimens - the site includes new high resolution images and stereo (anaglyph) images. Totally innovative is the inclusion of over 2000 3d digital models. These can be viewed on the website, or downloaded for your own software or 3d printing. They can also be viewed on iPads, iPhones, androids, etc. Full instructions for doing this are given in the project blog:

The partners in the GB3D Fossil Types Online Project currently include:
British Geological Survey
National Museum Wales
Sedgwick Museum, Cambridge
University Museum of Natural History, Oxford
Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution
Booth Museum of Natural History
Buxton Museum and Art Gallery
Dinosaur Isle
Dorset County Museum
Great North Museum: Hancock
Grosvenor Museum Chester
Lyme Regis Museum
Museums Sheffield
National Museums Scotland
Nottingham Natural History Museum
Royal Albert Memorial Museum Exeter
Manchester Museum
Warwickshire Museum
University Museum of Zoology Cambridge,
University of Bristol Geology Collection
World Museum Liverpool
Yorkshire Museum

Any other UK museum or collection with British type fossil material is encouraged to join and upload information about and images of their type specimens. Please contact me off-list, in the first instance.

All the information, images and models are provided under a Creative Commons Attribution - NonCommercial - ShareAlike 3.0 Unported Licence<>. The BGS is currently developing a 3D fossil app for educational purposes. Anyone interested in this, or beta-testing an API should also contact me off-list.

Best wishes,


Dr Mike Howe
Chief Curator
Head of the National Geological Repository

Phone: 0115 9363105  Email: mhowe at
WSB UGN  - British Geological Survey
Keyworth, Nottingham, NG12 5GG

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