2022 GGY 789 field trip to Florisbad, Free State

Posted on March 23, 2022

The 2022 GGY 789 field trip, led by Dr. Natalie Haussmann and Prof. Greg Breetzke, took place from 18 to 21 March at Florisbad, in the Free State. Thirteen of the BSc Geography Honours students and three of the GIS Honours students attended. Activities included ecological field techniques (led by Dr. Nico Avenant, Bloemfontein Museum), paleontology and archaeology talks by Dr. Haussmann and Dr. Rossouw (Bloemfontein Museum) and a trip to the Bloemfontein museum.  

Throughout the few days spent at the research station the students enjoyed talks and presentations on many topics including learning about the history of the Florisbad Research Station and how it has had many fossils found on site including the famous 260 ka Florisbad skull. The archaeology talks presented by Dr. Lloyd Rossouw taught students about taphonomy (study of how fossils are formed) and how to identify the markings on fossilized bones. The students were able to see what they had learned first-hand by being shown the fossil collection at the research station and the various pit sites where fossils are being discovered. A practical test in sketching stratigraphic layering ended the activities. 

It was all round a very enjoyable experience that provided the students with a lifetime of memories, as well as new knowledge on small mammal sampling and fossils. 

- Author Department of Geography, Geoinformatics and Meteorology
Published by Christel Hansen

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