Ask A Geologist
We encourage those with questions about Minnesota geology and/or rock and fossil samples to first take a look at the FAQs page linked below.
Please understand that our geologists are often out-of-office for extended periods of time performing field duties and may not be readily available. We will do our best to have those specializing in your particular question(s) respond in a timely manner. You can also visit our Staff Directory to email a geologist directly who might specialize in the area regarding your question.
To better help you, we recommend that you include the following information when submitting a public inquiry:
- Your name
- Geographic location pertaining to your inquiry (if applicable) - This can be a specific or general location (for example, a nearby city or the name of the county). This information helps our geologists key in on the particular geology for that local area, and can help them better provide answers.
- Message details - As many details about your specific question that you are willing to provide.
- Photos of the sample or area in question (if applicable) - Many rock and fossil samples can be identified rather easily with good quality photos. Please help us by taking photos that are clear and crisp, have good lighting, and include some sort of object to give our geologists a sense of scale (such as a ruler or coin). Including good quality photos of your sample now will help save you time later. Sending photos from several angles or viewpoints is also very helpful.
Additional external resources
- What's In My Neighborhood - An online application provided by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) to access environmental information about your community.
- Minnesota State Archaeologist - The primary public contact in Minnesota for archaeological-related questions.
- Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (MNDNR) Geology Education - Additional educational resources regarding Minnesota rocks and fossils provided by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
- Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) Drinking Water Protection - Resources and information regarding public water supplies in Minnesota provided by the Minnesota Department of Health.
- Minnesota Association for Environmental Education (MAEE) Geology Resources - Geology educational resources provided by the Minnesota Association for Environmental Education
- Minnesota Ground Water Association - A non-profit, volunteer organization which promotes public policy and scientific education about ground water.
- Science Museum of Minnesota
- Bell Museum
- Karst Outreach and Education - Provided by the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA)
- Geotechnical Engineering section of the Minnesota Department of Transportation