Sunday, November 6, 2016

Finally - something other than Centrums - in fact, a whole Bunch More!

It seemed like lately we have only been finding centrums and neural arches in our blocks. We have about 4 totally prepared & sent to Alaska, 3 in the works and 5-6 still showing on the blocks. However, things are changing and we now have a plethora of other types of bones.

I am currently working on one of the large blocks (#1) at OMSI and have uncovered a bone with teeth. This is either a premaxilla (front upper jaw) or mandible. Unfortunately, the bone had been split due to natural weathering, being close to the surface of the block. I think it can be salvaged, but there may be some teeth missing. These first two photos show both halves of  the bone, split down the midline due to natural cracking. It is about 4 inches long.
 And here is a further split, this time right directly down through the teeth!  By my count there are about 9 large and complete teeth. Although this is an unfortunate split, it gives us an excellent view of the tooth internal anatomy. I'll be regluing these with Vinac (R) so that they can be easily unglued for examination. It would be hard to do better than this if you tried!  It will take a lot more labor to get these removed from the block and prepared for shipment. Teeth are particularily hard to work with as they shatter easily.

As for other bones, I'm also working on a block at home in my off-hours. This smaller block was between the two larger ones and is very rich in bones. I already have centrums, ribs, gastralia, and others. This bone appears to be part of the post-orbital. The remainder should be on one of the other blocks on the facing side. This is shown with a 3D printed copy of a post-orbital found previously.

Here is a small limb or digit bone (not finished yet), again with a 3D previous bone. 
Here is what I think will be a Quadrate. We have several of these, only one other is complete. This one is much less robust than the other as well as being smaller. Nice growth sequence going on, I think.  
Last of all, I have an excellent Orthoceras. These straight versions of chambered Nautilus are common, but this is the largest one we have ever found. It is almost as large as my Exacto (R) knife!

Sincerely, Greg Carr