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Fossil Collecting

   I got in a discussion about amateur/commercial fossil collecting at a
Rock and Mineral SOciety meeting last night, and thought it might be
interesting for the members if I wrote an article on it.

   I am interested in what the "professionals" think about this subject
(professionals meaning collectors both amateur and commercial, grad students
in paleo, PhDs, museum workers and even George O.).  Some specific things
I'm interested in (but by no means are limited to) are opinions on tighter
regulations or outright bans on collection on federal lands, restrictions on
ownership and sale of private and commercial collections, sale of fossils
found on private lands, or even an outright ban on fossil sale/ownership etc.

   Also, if anybody knows an electronic means to get the text of the Fossil
Protection Act and the Vertebrate Paleontology Act I'd appreciate it.  Also,
a pointer to where I can find information on fossil collection in Alberta
would be welcome (an essay by a knowledgable reader of this message would be
acceptable as well).

   (Mickey, if you could forward this to Ken Carpenter I would appreciate
it.  I've traded e-mail with him before on this subject, but it was confined
to collection on BLM lands.  I found his insight interesting.)

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