Palaeontology Permits and Guidelines

Special Places

Palaeontology Permits and Guidelines

It is against the law to excavate or collection fossils in Nova Scotia without a Heritage Research Permit. The permit system is in place to make sure that:

  • Individuals excavating fossils are qualified to do the work;
  • The excavation is well planned;
  • Any recovered fossils are properly studied and cared for;
  • A report about the work conducted is drafted and submitted to the provincial repository for future use by researchers, educators and the general public.

Palaeontology permits are available in two categories: Field Research and Professional Research.

To apply for a permit follow these steps:

1. Review the guidelines to understand which permit applies.

2. Complete, sign and date the Heritage Research Permit.

3. Submit your application to the Special Places Program.


Field Research Guidelines (PDF 531 KB)

Professional Research Guidelines (PDF 580 KB)


Heritage Research Permit (Palaeontology) (PDF 100 KB)



Presenting and interpreting a connection to the past helps define the collective community of the present and future


Contact Information 

Special Places Protection
1747 Brunswick St, 3rd Floor
Halifax, NS B3H 3A6