Did you know…. That there are “rules” for meteorite hunting?

By · June 13, 2010 · Filed in Did You Know???

Well, meteorite hunting rules are not written in stone… and they aren’t laws either, but there are some general guidelines of etiquette when hunting for meteorites. Normally we hear the word etiquette in regards to fine dining – telling us which fork to use when, how to hold your teacup (pinkys up of course), and how to thank the chef. Although we don’t have to search for meteorites with our pinkys held correctly, there are some rules that we need to remember before our next hunting adventure.

Get off my lawn you crazy kids. Have you ever heard that on TV or in real life? If you ever knew anyone who did not want anyone on their property, then I am sure you know how important it was to obey their wishes. The same rules holds true when meteorite hunting. You should NEVER hunt on land in which you do not have permission. If you want to hunt on private property, you have to have the proper permission from the owner.

Treat it like it’s yours.When hunting in the desert or on someone’s property, you should ALWAYS treat the area as if it were your own, like the Boy Scouts motto, leaving it like (or better than) you found it. You would not dig hundreds of holes on your property and toss litter everywhere! So, you should not do that when meteorite hunting either. The property owner will appreciate your thoughtfulness and be more willing to let you or other treasure hunters back in the future, and future hunters will as well – they want nice places to hunt for their own treasures, too.

Mark it and Shoot It!This is the most important rule of this blog!!! X marks the spot right? Sometimes, but in the case of meteorite hunting, it is not so much an X as it is having the exact coordinates of a meteorite when you find one. A GPS device is the best way for you to document the meteorite’s location, and it is important to photograph your find, using a reference object or ruler in the photo for sizing purposes.Try to get a picture with the meteorite and the GPS together before removing it. Coins work very well as reference objects when you do not have a ruler handy as coins are of standard sizes. However, if you find a meteorite that is quite large, it might work better to use something larger, like a water bottle, hat, or other larger object to show the scale of the meteorite when compared to the reference object. Now that we have documented our find, it is our duty to report our find to the scientific community, and provide a sample.

Why is it so important to report your find?One of the reasons it is legal to hunt meteorites is because we (Meteorite Hunters) said hey, we can be intelligent, and honest enough to record the data, and get it to the proper scientific community. You might have found something never before found that might be one of the most important finds ever! Remember, meteorites are one of the rarest things on Earth.

Click here to to find places near you to report and test your finds!!!

Places to report or test your find.

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