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Took this photo of an unnamed eschrichtiid from the Pliocene San Diego Formation of San Diego County in March 2019. Until the 2000s, the fossil record of gray whales was confined to the Pleistocene, but thanks to the work of Michelangelo Bisconti, it is apparent that gray whales emerged about the same time as the oldest rorquals (Eschrichtioides was long considered a balaenopterid, but eventually recognized as a gray whale relative).
The "Cone Whale" is now on display at CCNHM, Charleston, SC!
Boesse posted a topic in A Trip to the MuseumHey all, Our collections manager and I have had a pretty busy week, and finished the first phase of the installation of the "Cone Whale" - a baleen whale skeleton collected from the Lee Creek Mine by Lee Cone (President of the Special Friends of the Aurora Museum). The specimen is the most complete whale skeleton ever collected from the mine, and was hauled out a few bones at a time over a two week period in Spring 2007. It includes a partial disarticulated cranium with an earbone (petrosal/periotic), left and right mandibles, all cervical vertebrae, most of the thoracics, and poss