Trilobites on Vancouver Island
Photo credit: Cliff Craven.
During their time on Earth, trilobites were one of the most diverse and successful groups of the animal kingdom. So why have only a few been found on Vancouver Island?
Part of the reason is the geologic makeup of the island. Most fossil-bearing deposits that humans can reach are of the Cretaceous era. This time period began more than a hundred million years after trilobites went extinct.
It is not easy for a fossil to last long enough to be discovered. Many natural forces, such as erosion, can destroy a fossil even after petrification has occurred.