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Dating back 70 million years, the fossilized remains of ammonites have been known for a long time by Native Americans who used them as an amulet for hunting and for healing.
It is recognized as a gem since 1981 and its atypical iridescent appearance promotes its commercial development.

Exploited sites

It is mainly found in the province of Alberta in Canada for the variety used as a gemstone, it has also been reported in Tyrol in Austria.

See pictures of the mines / other pictures

Use in jewelry

It is a stone newly available on the market, different from other gemstones, which is in high demand in North America and especially in Canada where it is put forward as a national specialty. It is used in doublet, mounted on a solid support preventing it from breaking in the first shock.

Daily care and precautions

It is fragile, sensitive to household products, detergents, heat and shocks.

Looking alike stones

opal , mother-of-pearl

Imitations and treatments

Synthetic iridescent materials resin coated can look alike but they are very easy to detect.

Chemical characteristics
aragonite, calcite, silice, pyrite

fossilized ammonite shell

Physical characteristics

Main color : red

Other colors : blue, yellow, green

it is of all the colors in its iridescence

Color of streak : white

Luster : pearly

Hardness : 4.0

Density : 2.50

Cleavage : perfect

Fracture : uneven

Optical properties

Transparency : transparent, translucent

Refractive Index : 1.520 - 1.680

Double refraction : 0.155


visible double refraction : no

Pleochroism : absent

Number of colors : 1

Fluorescence : weak



Layer a few millimeters on fossil ammonites

Crystal system : orthorhombic

Other informations
For sale in our boutiques
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