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  Cap Blanc Nez

june 2002
Last Modified:
july 2017

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Location description

Some fossil rich layers are found on the fore shore. At low tide you can reach the clay layers from the Albien (part of the Cretaceous period). The cliffs are from the Cenomanian and Turonian (upper Cretaceous period). See also the description of nearby location Cap Gris Nez.

Beware! At some places it it forbidden to use hammers and chisels! Collecting fossils without equipment is allowed. Whatch the tides!

Photo 1 of 8

Added by: Gerrit-Jan on 08-07-2011

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The area, also known as Boulonnais, is located south of Calais at the French north coast. There are two major cliffs: Cap Blanc Nez and Cap Gris Nez. You can find fossils in the cliffs as well as in clay layers on the fore shore. At different locations you can find fossils:

  • Escalles / Cap Blanc Nez Blanc Nez means "White nose", because of the white cliffs. On the fields around Cap Blanc Nez and Escalles you can find sponges and sea urchins. On the beach (to the right from Escalles) you can find these fossils and ammonites. Cap Blanc Nez can also be reached from Sangatte in the north. Beware of falling rocks near the cliff!
  • Wissant / Strouanne On the fore shore (to the right from the village) sometimes fossil rich layers from the Albien (part of the Cretaceous period) are exposed. This can change very fast. Sometimes everything is covered with sand. In the clay you can find brachiopods, belemnites, gastropods, bivalves and ammonites (i.e. Anahoplites, Hamites and Hoplites). Shark teeth and fish remains are scarce.
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See also description above. The fossils coming from the clay layers often contain Pyrite, and need special treatment. See Information pages.

There are 88 photographs of fossils from this location in our Fossil ID System.
Go to the Cap Blanc Nez Species List to identify your own finds!

Literature recommended by members

  • Flip Hoedemaker en Joke Stemvers-van Bemmel, Maart 1996: Wissant Ammonieten ISSN 0167-4692
    Het is en Exemplar van gea, driemaandelijkse tijdschrift van de Stichting Geologische Aktiviteiten voor belangstellenden in geologie en mineralogie van Maart 1996 vol.29, nr.1\r\n\r\nBeschrijving van de vindplaats en het Albien van Wissant. Uitgebreid informatie over Ammonieten in het allgemeen. Beschrijving van de Wissant-Ammonieten uit het geslacht Eupholites met fotos en tekeningen. Aaanwijzing voor het prepareren vangefosfateerde Ammonieten.
    Added by
  • Smith, 1983: Fossils of the Chalk, 2nd edition
    ISBN0901702781, Zeer geschikt voor fossielen van de Engelse zuidkust en de Franse noordkust.
    Added by

Do you have (more) literature suggestions for this location? Please send your suggestion using the Literature form!

Other locations in the area

Fossil location: Cap Griz Nez
Fossil location: Dannes (groeve / quarry)
Fossil location: Kent (Dover)
Fossil location: Kent (Folkestone)
Fossil location: Pointe aux Oies


Everybody using the fossil collecting location descriptions from this site has to respect the Collecting Code!
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