"so it's quite a prehistoric thing."
A six-year-old boy has found a fossil dating back millions of years whilst digging in his garden in Walsall.
Siddak Singh Jhamat, known as Sid, was using a fossil-hunting kit he received for Christmas when he came across a rock that looked like a horn.
He said: “I was just digging for worms and things like pottery and bricks and I just came across this rock which looked a bit like a horn and thought it could be a tooth or a claw or a horn, but it was actually a piece of coral which is called horn coral.
“I was really excited about what it really was.”
His father Vish Singh was able to identify the horn coral through a fossil group that he is a member of on Facebook.
He estimates that the fossil is between 251 and 488 million years old.
Mr Singh said: “We were surprised he found something so odd-shaped in the soil… he found a horn coral, and some smaller pieces next to it, then the next day he went digging again and found a congealed block of sand.
“In that, there were loads of little molluscs and seashells, and something called a crinoid, which is like a tentacle of a squid, so it’s quite a prehistoric thing.”
Mr Singh went on to say that the fossil’s markings mean it is most likely a Rugosa coral and that they existed during the Paleozoic Era.
He added: “The period that they existed from was between 500 and 251 million years ago, the Paleozoic Era.
“England at the time was part of Pangea, a landmass of continents.
“England was all underwater as well… that’s quite a significant expanse of time.”
The family explained that they do not live in an area that is known for fossils, like the Jurassic Coast in the south of England.
However, they do have a lot of natural clay in their garden where the fossils were discovered.
Mr Singh said: “Lots and lots of people have commented on how amazing it is to find something in the back garden.
“They say you can find fossils anywhere if you look carefully enough, but to find a significantly large piece like that is quite unique.”
The family now hope to tell Birmingham University’s Museum of Geology about their discovery.