ANCIENT FACTS: Several million years ago Florida was not the size it is today, in fact, it looked more like a small island. Sea levels constantly fluctuated with Earth's climate cycles and when the ocean recessed, Florida emerged.
Many of the marine and land animals that lived millions of years ago left behind evidence, which can be found today in the Peace River and in other fossil rich areas of Florida. A timetable of life and fossils are classified by age in epochs. Fossils found in the Peace River and in areas near Venice,FL have been classified to be from the Miocene Epoch 23.7 - 5.3 million years ago, the Pliocene Epoch 5.3 – 1.8 million years ago and Pleistocene Epoch 1.8 million years ago - 10,000 years ago.
HOW: Fossils are sometimes found on dry land, in spoil piles or along river banks, but generally you won’t find the variety, which hide buried beneath the water. You will be equipped with sanitized equipment consisting of a shovel/scoop, sifter and collection apron. You will then receive brief instruction on how to dig, sift and ID the fossils you find.
After that, the race is on to find your own Florida prehistoric treasures.
WHO: We've had quite a diverse population of kiddos and adults come out in the quest to hunt fossils with us.
Our fossil hunters have ranged in age from a tiny 2 up to a mature 76, from all walks of life and from all different parts of the world. Several of our fossil hunters found it to be fascinating and many said they
couldn’t wait to do it again. Any child under 12 will receive a “Fossil Hunter” certificate.
WHAT: We have found many species of shark, horse, tapir, gator, drum fish, peccary and barracuda teeth, along with alligator, armadillo, glyptodont and ray dermal scutes. We have also found sand dollars, agatized coral and shells, bryozoans, turtle carapace, dugong ribs, deer antlers, stingray mouth plates, stingray barbs, mastodon and mammoth fragmented teeth and bones and more. We guarantee you will find a shark tooth and once you do, you will not want to stop looking for more. The only type of fossils you will not find are dinosaur fossils, because
by the time Florida rose from the sea they were already extinct.
WHERE: We hunt fossils via kayak on the Peace River, on foot in tributaries of the Peace River, as well as,
off Venice area beaches, where no kayak is needed. The best way to find fossils in the river is to rent
a kayak to get you to the rich fossil hunting grounds away from public access (boat ramps and parks) that are not frequented and picked over.
WHEN: Fossil hunting on the Peace River is best when water levels are 12” below normal, which is normally late winter
or in the springtime. However, if conditions (water level and weather) are favorable, then it's time to hunt.
The Peace is solely controlled by rainwater, so with more rain, the water table becomes higher and the current
is stronger. Fossil hunting in the tributaries and at the beach is a little different. In the tributaries, the water level
is usually one to two feet deep so it's relatively easy to navigate and at the beach you have options to wade in
the water to dig and sift or you may snorkel and/or dive in search of fossils. We constantly monitor weather, wind, marine and beach forecasts for optimum hunting conditions and may have to amend an adventure
based on changes in these forecasts.
H2O Adventures & More LLC complies with Florida Statute 1004.5, which sets forth the State of Florida’s declared intent to protect and preserve vertebrate fossils and vertebrate paleontology sites. What that means, is that you are allowed to search for shark teeth, plant and invertebrate fossils, which do not require a permit. However, we strongly encourage you to apply and obtain your own Fossil Permit, which is $5.00 annually. We've even made it a little easier for you, just click the button on the bottom of this page to be connected to the Florida Museum of Natural History page where you can click on the application, print, complete then mail it with your $5.00 payment.
Fossil Related Pricing
Fossil Hunting Tours on the Peace River 4hr, 6hr or up to 8 hrs (via kayak)
Pricing for adults starts at $125 for 4 hrs, $175 for 6hrs and $225 for up to 8 hrs. Kiddos <12 are a flat rate of $70 for any duration (4, 6 or up to 8hrs)
The guide will meet you at a designated location then lead you to the gravel where they will show you how to search and ID fossils. All sanitized kayaking, fossil hunting and safety gear will be provided for your use up to the agreed upon timeframe (weather permitting).
Fossil Hunting combo Creek & River Hike (on foot)
$80 adults $25 kiddos <12
The guide will provide a meeting location then after a 20+/- minute hike to the river will show you how to search and ID fossils. Sanitized fossil hunting equipment will be provided for your use up to a four (4) hour period of time (weather permitting).
Fossil Hunting at the Creek (on foot)
$60 adults $25 kiddos <12
The guide will provide a meeting location then after a short hike into the creek will show you how to search and ID fossils. Sanitized fossil hunting equipment will be provided for your use up to a three (3) hour period of time (weather permitting).
Fossil Hunting at the Beach (on foot)
$60 adults $25 kiddos <12
The guide will provide a meeting location then will show you how to search and ID fossils. Sanitized fossil hunting equipment will be provided for your use up to a three (3) hour period of time (weather permitting).
Fossil Hunting Tag Along (creek/river)
starting at $60 join us as a tag along for any publicly advertised fossil hunting event on the river and/or at the creek utilizing your own paddle-craft and fossil hunting equipment. This is great if you need an adventurous buddy, two or three to go out digging with, remember there's safety in numbers!
Annual Fossil Hunting Passes
The fine print...Aside from paying the annual fee, we require a completed waiver and ask for you to contact us within 48 hours of any adventure you wish to attend (where we supply the equipment) so we can adequately prepare for your arrival. Please note, we will make every effort to get you on and in the water but any requests made less than 48 hours may be declined. Annual passes are valid one year from the purchase date. In 2021, we hosted almost 60 different fossil hunting events so there are ample opportunities to get you out hunting. If you are serious about fossil hunting the annual pass will pay for itself in no time.
Annual Fossil Hunting Pass
$1000 This all access pass allows you to join us for as many or as few of our publicly advertised fossil hunting events on the river, at the creek or the beach. Use of equipment such as kayak, kayaking and safety gear, as well as, fossil hunting equipment is included.
Annual Fossil Hunting Tag Along Pass
$500 All access pass to join us for as many publicly advertised fossil hunting events on the river, at the creek or beach utilizing your own paddle-craft and fossil hunting gear. This is great if you need an adventurous buddy, two or three to go out with, remember there's safety in numbers!
Annual Beach & Creek Fossil Hunting Pass
$400 All access pass to join us for as many publicly advertised fossil hunting events at the beach or at the creek. Use of fossil hunting equipment is included.
OTHER OPTIONS...purchase a shark tooth grab bag.
If you want to try your luck at fossil hunting without a guided tour, purchase a shark tooth grab bag, which contains a variety of shark teeth. Then you can search for fossils without having to travel, rent gear and get wet. Check out "OUR STORE" where we also sell fossil hunting kits, sifters, scoops, shovels, dry bags, H2O t-shirts, shark tooth candles, shark tooth air fresheners, our photographs and more.