After discovery and purchase by North Sea Fossils, all fossils are gathered in our processing office. The initial selection and sorting out is then done by Albert Hoekman, our specialist. In the course of the years Albert has handled literally hundreds of thousands of Pleistocene mammal fossils, and has gained an invaluable hands-on knowledge. There is probably no other person in the world who has identified as many Pleistocene fossis as Albert, and we are proud that he is a part of our team.
When the fossils are found in the North Sea they are saturated with salt water. In order to preserve them they are first desalinated, to stop them from disintegrating. The fossils are immersed for six weeks in constantly refreshed, fresh water. They are then slowly dried, and stabilized with a museum standard conservation layer, which not only preserves the fossils, but also brings out their natural stunning coloring. This process takes around two to three months to complete.
Small restorations are done by our own team during this process. In some cases however damaged fossils may require larger interventions, which are done by Remie Bakker, of Manimal Works. Remie is not only a magician for fossil repairs, but also loves what he does. He strikes the perfect balance between vital repairs and maintaining the authenticity and integrity of the fossil. Together with Remie we also supply museums with scientific displays and reconstructions of Ice Age mammels.
In order to display our fossils to the best effect, for larger and more important pieces we then commission hand-made stands. Material, colour and finish are decided with the fossil in mind, so that the stand does not distract from the piece but instead brings it out to best effect.
When fossils are acquired by our customers, they are carefully wrapped and packed by our team. Larger and fragile pieces are boxed in custom made wooden crates. Shipping is usually done by TNT or Fedex. This treatment ensures that all fossils reach their eventual homes in perfect condition!