Apatite                                        Mineral Group: PHOSPHATES

  • Apatite is a mineral that used to be used as a source of fertilizers. Today other minerals are used for fertilizers. In Ontario, apatite is no longer being mined for fertilizer.
  • Apatite minerals form gemmy, colorful, hexagonal crystals. Its use for jewellery is mainly limited to earrings because it is soft and brittle.
  • Rockhounds enjoy collecting apatite crystals because large, well formed crystals can be found.



Apatite Crystals
  • Crystal faces show glassy, shiny, vitreous luster.
  • The apatite crystal is prismatic. It is shaped like a 6 sided prism and comes to a blunt termination.
  • Crystals can be elongated or stubby.


Apatite from Eganville, Ontario

Apatite, 21" X 7" X 6.5" July 2002 "Elfi's Trench", Miller Property, Eganville, Ontario CANADA
This large doubly terminated apatite crystal was found in July 2002 during a CCFMS field trip to explore the old "Lost Mine", Eeny Mine & Smart Mine exploration trenches.

  • Apatite crystals often grow in clusters. This cluster of apatites shows how the crystals grow because the calcite that used to be around the minerals has been leached away by water in the soil.
  • In Eganville, Ontario apatite crystals are mainly red though there are also green apatite crystals that are quite gemmy. Other minerals found in this formation are biotite mica, titanite, feldspar and pink calcite.
  • Mineral crystals like these apatite crystals and black mica are often found inside massive deposits of other minerals. In this case they are in pink calcite.

Apatite crystal in calcite  from Miller Property, Eganville, Ontario  CANADA



Apatite crystals can be found by digging in forest soil in known locations. Often loose crystals can be found at the foot of trees.


A Poem about Rock Collecting - Digging for Apatites in Eganville, Ontario


The peaceful silence of the northern woods, interrupted by a wail,
A soaring screaming roar, louder than a stomped on tigers tail.
A cloud of dust obscures a man, how can he see to use that tool,

With nothing to cover his nose and ears, I think the manís a fool.
Suddenly the screaming noise stops, I think I have gone deaf.
The dust cloud drifts on by, but I keep on holding my breath.
Out of this swirling maelstrom, staggered a large ghostly form,
Coughing and hacking, he lugged a saw that had caused this dusty storm.
I guess he had some trouble; his saw had broken down.
Behind the mask of dust, his face displayed a worried pasty frown.
I guess Nick was finished for the day; the Apatite can wait.

However, Elfi kept finding more crystals; and they were looking great
The best laid plans of mice and men sometimes go awry.
Nick had brought that saw along and he just had to give it a try.
While he cut one out for his wife, the others were finding more.
Soon Nick had a full time job, I began to hate that rock saws roar.
Crystals of Apatite, some of exceptional size, like something from a dream.
They cleared off a Calcite vein they looked like salmon going up a stream.
Now there is a quandary, do we go or do we stay,
The planned trip was interrupted, they stayed another day.

Part of us stayed to the plans, we took the scheduled trip.
More than half went back to the trenches, old Frank near had a fit.
Two more days of pounding, another broken saw,
More large crystals were being located, there ought to be a law.
Well this trip is finally over and we missed a place or two,
I cannot say it wasnít interesting and Iím really not too blue.
Nickís planning went out the window, next year will be better I am told,
I hope your appetite for Apatite is sated Elfi, next time pick on gold.

by Dick Stata Aug. 24th. Thinking back on the 2002 CCFMS summer trip.


Apatite in calcite, Comet Mine, Quebec, CANADA
Blue Apatite  from Roadcut on Faraday Road, Cardiff, Ontario  CANADA
Apatite  from Bear Lake Claim, Bancroft, Ontario  CANADA
Apatite  from Otter Lake Claim, Otter lake, Quebec  CANADA
Fluorapatite  from  Otter lake, Quebec  CANADA


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