A famous fossil

Known as Microdoceras birchi, this is one of the most famous ammonites along the coast. It is quite distinctive with two rows of spines on each rib.The old guide books say that it is common and plentiful but, in reality, well-preserved specimens are quite rare and nearly always very difficult to prepare or clean from the rock. You can find them on the Birchi Bed between the Shales with Beef and Black Ven Marls within the lower Jurassic clay rocks around Charmouth and Lyme Regis. 

This specimen was found by Barney Hansford, a local Charmouth collector from the 1950s through to the 1970s. During his life he built up a large collection of local fossils and displayed them in Barney’s Fossil Exhibition in Charmouth. After his death, the collection was broken up but some specimens found their way to Bridport Museum’s collection.

Find out more about ammonites on the molluscs pages.

Common name


Scientific name

Microderoceras birchi


Molluscs > Cephalopods


Lower Lias

Time period

Lower Jurassic


c. 201-174 million years

Where found

Stonebarrow, east of Charmouth

Found by

Barney Hansford


Bridport Museum

Accession number

BRPMG 1097