Dinosaur fossil collecting is a fascinating hobby. Dinosaur fossils are a great find and a much sought-after purchase for collectors all over the world. If you are just beginning your collection, you may not know where to begin. It will help you tremendously if you educate yourself on the specifics of dinosaur fossils so you will obtain authentic pieces at a fair price. Knowing where to find your collectibles and what to look for is a good start. Here are 3 suggestions to help you make the most of your new hobby:
1. Obtain Some Buyer's Guides to Dinosaur Fossils
Read about how fossils are formed. Learn where certain types of dinosaur fossils are often found. Be sure your reading material includes a fossil identification guide and gallery of example photos. You might even learn how to hunt down your own dinosaur fossils while going on an expedition or fossil hunt. If you don't wish to buy your reading material, head on over to your local library. Books and videos on the subject should be available for loan.
2. Attend Local Fossil and Mineral Shows
Attending these functions can guide you in the right direction. Not only will you be able to view specimens up close, you will have the opportunity to gain first hand knowledge from experts in the field. Additionally, you'll probably have the opportunity to purchase rare and highly collectible dinosaur fossils you might not find in local shops. The larger trade shows often feature a gathering of vendors – and collectors - from far away places. Don't forget to ask these vendors about the common and less common fossils so you can make an educated comparison.
3. Gain Some Background Information on Your Shop Keeper
A relatively easy way to shop for dinosaur fossils is by scouting local gift shops that sell rare and unique offerings. If you find such a shop, it is in your best interest to ask the shop owner a few pertinent questions. Does the proprietor have a geology, anthropology, or paleontology background? How did he or she become interested in selling fossils? Also, ask how long they have been in business and if they have formal training. Gaining some insight into the shopkeeper's background may give you a better feel for the merchandise that's offered.
Equally important, don't neglect to ask if each piece comes with a certificate of authenticity. These are sometimes referred to as a COA. The COA will be signed by the seller, and typically include the date and location of the signing. It may be numbered as well, especially if there is a limited number of the exact item being offered. If so, it will typically be stamped "Limited Edition." For more information, talk to a professional like Fossil Avenue.