Tetrapod TracksIn 1993 an undergraduate geology student discovered a tetrapod track on the northeast of Valentia Island. The tetrapod tracks are in layperson's terms footprints of an animal believed to have been created some 385 million years ago (give or take a year or two). The Valentia Island trackway is of international importance as it provides some of the oldest evidence of one of the first water-dwelling creatures which crawled out of the water and made the important evolutionary step toward land dwelling.

While the trackway is an internationally important site finding it is not so easy. Head for the Valentia Island Radio Station which is signposted and relatively easy to find. Next to this, you will find the trackway. Don’t expect a smooth walkway, instead be prepared for a steepish sloping path (but very manageable), and depending on sea conditions you may or may be able to get down to see the actual trackway. It is not an exaggeration to say that you will see the trackway in its original condition. No reproductive work has been carried out here. There is an information point at the entrance to the site. Please note this is an important National Heritage site and is protected by law. Serious penalties will be imposed on anyone interfering in any way with the footprints.

Tetrapod Trackway

It is truly awesome to contemplate the fact that when these tracks were made this part of the world was south of the equator and joined to North America!