SharkFinder kits contain fossil-bearing matrix from the Atlantic Coastal plain. This matrix is ancient ocean sediments and contains the fossilized remains of sea life that was buried by these sediments.
We are currently focused on several layers of ancient ocean sediments called the Calvert Formation. The Calvert Formation is exposed in many areas of Maryland and Virginia. However, no exposures are as famous as those along the Chesapeake Bay. The Calvert Formation makes up the mass of many of the large cliffs that line the middle portion of the Bay. The fossils from these cliffs have been collected and studied heavily for the past 130 years.
Despite the large numbers people studying the Calvert Formation, research has been unduly focused on large mammals and mega-sharks. This bias is reflected in the professional research literature as well as in museum collections. SharkFinder allows citizen scientists the opportunity to help paleontologists generate a more complete picture of ancient ocean life.