Saturday, 19 March 2016

Wren's Nest Nature Reserve

All links open in new windows, and all pics were taken by me!

The Wren’s Nest Nature Reserve in Dudley is one of my favourite places in the entire world, I go maybe three or four times a year and I never get bored. The main part of this site has an exposed and uplifted Silurian reef area, absolutely covered in fossils (mostly corals, crinoids and brachiopods). There are also trilobites found here, but I’ve only ever seen one on the reef before.

My work colleague on her first trip to the Wrenna!

South of the reef area are some steep slopes that have been fenced off. This part is ancient seafloor, about 427million years old, and there are preserved ripple marks on the surface! These are super useful for determining the environment at the time, as there are different sizes and orientations to the ripples. These changes reflect the changes in ocean dynamics.

Ripple marks (best seen top right of pic).

I tend to spend most of my time on the reef, looking for and photographing my finds. Hammering is not allowed at this site but it is easy enough to pick up loose fossils or bits of limestone debris. On a sunny day this is the best place to bask in the sun! It is high up and exposed so perfect for catching some rays.

The reef, looking south-ish.

Halysites, a chain coral.

Tail section of a trilobite! My first trilobite found on the reef.