Best Tips for Finding Shark Teeth
Love exploring for beach treasures, but haven't figured out how to find shark teeth yet?
I'm sharing my best tips here because it took me a bit to figure out how to find them myself!
and eager to find some shark teeth of your own? Shark teeth hunting can be an exciting and rewarding activity for both kids and adults. In this article, we'll explore some of the best ways to find shark teeth. Let's dive in!
1. Research beaches before you go
When you are headed out on a beach vacation, do a Google search for "can you find shark teeth at _______ beach?" This will give you a quick answer so you know whether to even bother looking! Some beaches are plentiful and some are not! Some well-known places are Venice Beach in Florida, Calvert Cliffs State Park in Maryland, and the coastal areas of Charleston, South Carolina. These locations have a higher likelihood of finding shark teeth due to their geological history. However, there are lots of other places you can find them- where I live on Amelia Island and other areas around Jacksonville, FL are popular but less well known!
Tide going out created 3 good shell lines on this day
2. Timing can be Key
To maximize your chances of finding shark teeth, timing may be important. Plan your beach visits during low tide or after a storm when the receding waters and wave action may reveal new treasures. During these times, the waves wash away the top layer of sand, exposing hidden shark teeth and other fossils. You can even stand in the same spot and see them appear over and over after the waves wash the sand around.
Can you spot them?
3. Look for shiny, black triangles
When searching for shark teeth, pay attention to the shell beds texture and color. Shark teeth are often dark, smooth, and glossy, making them stand out from the surrounding shells and sand.
Keep your eyes peeled for shiny, black triangles! You may find other shapes, or see some half-buried, but if they are completely uncovered by sand, you'll likely see a triangle shape. Look for areas with coarse sand or gravel, where shark teeth are more likely to become visible. Here on Amelia Island, we have lots of oyster shells too and the broken ends will trick you into thinking they are teeth!
Search the higher shell lines too!
4. Scan the High Tide Line
Shark teeth can often be found along the high tide line, where the waves deposit shells, rocks, and other debris. This is usually a big dry patch of shells closer to sand dunes. Walk along this line, keeping an eye out for any interesting objects that catch your attention. You may need to be really patient looking here! I'll often sit with my chair in these piles and rummage through them. While you might not find teeth here every time, I always find cool treasures. And take note that up here, any teeth won't be as shiny because they will be dry!
5. Dig through the wet sand, especially at tide pools
Dig a small trench in the sand near the waterline, creating a hole that allows the water to fill it. As the water fills the trench, it brings sediment from deeper layers to the surface, including shark teeth. Gently sift through the sediment to search for your prized shark teeth.
Walk back and forth through tide pools, and you may stir up some as you go aloong!
6. Join Guided Tours or Fossil Hunting Groups
If you're new to shark tooth hunting or want to learn from experts, consider joining guided tours or fossil hunting groups. A lot of tours actually go to river beds because of the build-up of fossils there it's likely you'll find shark teeth. A guide will give you lots of tips and probably take you somewhere you're guaranteed to find them! Plus you can connect with other enthusiasts and share tips. At a minimum, a great tip is to join some Facebook groups for shark tooth hunting to get help IDing what kind of teeth you've found or to get tips on the best places to go.
7. Respect the Environment
Remember to respect the environment and follow any rules or regulations at the beach or fossil hunting sites. There may be certain parks or beaches where you aren't allowed to remove anything, so be sure you know beforehand and look for signs warning you to not take anything or areas to stay out of (never walk through the dunes outside of marked paths! Avoid damaging the natural habitat or disturbing protected areas. Leaving the beach as you found it is important so future generations can continue to enjoy the thrill of finding shark teeth.
8. Have patience, and have fun!
You may not find teeth or other treasures every time you go. Very often I don't find any! But I do go to the beach a lot, and if you do find nothing- you got to spend time at the beach! Beachcombing, looking for treasures, and walking along the shore is a great way to relax, decompress and center your mind.
If you are shark tooth obsessed, be sure to check out all our shark tooth related decor and apparel and....
Happy Shark Tooth Hunting!