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Why are the Fossil Cliffs on Maria Island so Famous?

03 October 2022

We recently came across a great post from Stephanie, a geologist and blogger who gives us a brief background on why the rocks are just so spectacular on Maria Island.


Steph believes, for such a little island, Maria hosts an immense amount of geological diversity.


In a couple days you can travel through Tasmanian geological time, with visiting rocks that are both scientifically interesting and visually beautiful…



For example, did you know….


The oldest and lowest rock units underlying Maria Island, referred to as the Mathina Supergroup first formed 500 – 360 million years ago.



The Permian Parmeener group is host to the actual Fossil Cliffs; which consist of impure limestone, siltstone, and mudstone. These beds are locally up to 110 metres thick and full of marine fossils that evoke images of a pre-historic age.




The Upper Permain Parmeener group of rocks have stunning patterns of red, orange and yellow bands and rings, which are a form of iron-oxide staining known as liesegang. The patterns are the result of repeated precipitation of colloidal iron from groundwater solutions.



If you want to know which shoe is best for this type of adventure – check out our Merrell Summer Catalogue.

And for those that want to dig a little deeper in to the rock formation and science behind it – check out Steph’s video: