Early Beginnings

The early beginnings section introduces the main factors that have produced the Shetland environment as we see it today - geological history, geographical location, climate and the sea.

As you go through the zone you will discover how these factors have combined to shape the landscape and habitats of the islands and the interaction between humans and this environment.

Themes in this zone include: geology, continental drift, erosion, climate and biology.

Highlights to look out for include:

  • Minerals, including some extremely rare examples such as komatiite which is found in the South Mainland of Shetland; the next nearest place you will find this is in South-West Africa.
  • A representation of a glacier.
  • Discovery drawers containing examples of how people used rocks – including chromite which was used to make yellow paint and tan sheepskins.