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Found 8 results

  1. Last summer, on the last day of a long weekend of backcountry fossil hunting around Lake Diefenbaker, Saskatchewan, my friend and I decided to stop our canoe at a beach where on a previous morning I had found a large baculites cuneatus specimen. This beach was an outcropping of a unit of the Bearpaw formation known as the Demaine sand, and dated roughly to the late Campanian. The locality was chock full of golfball to softball-sized nodules, each with a delicate, coalified fossil inside, ranging from crustacean parts, chips of driftwood, to loose vertebrae. It wasn't long before I was looking down at a split nodule containing the symmetrical lines I knew were a skull. So of course, I assembled it together as best as I could, wrapped it in a sock, and we loaded back into the boat to head home. Some typical terrain in the area. The formerly glacial South Saskatchewan River carves deep into the marine clays and sands of the Bearpaw formation: The nodule, rather unceremoniously wrapped in a wool sock: And unwrapped. Note the cervical vertebra just above the posterior end of the skull, and how part of the end of the snout is missing (sorry about the lack of scale bar, there's a photo further down the post with proper scale): I sent a photo to a paleontologist friend, and was quickly referred to the Royal Saskatchewan Museum, who of course were eager to accept the fossil (not to mention that I was technically legally obliged to hand it over, per the Saskatchewan Heritage Property Act... But it's what I wanted to do anyway!). About a month later, my friend and I met with two other paleontologists down at Lake Diefenbaker to deliver the fossil (this time more carefully wrapped in a shoebox...) and to show them the site where we had found it. One long and wet trip in the zodiac raft later, we were there. We assisted in the collection of more samples, this time coming up with an even broader variety of flora and fauna, including a small crinoid, some wood chips with amber, and some more decapods. One of the two paleontologists was excited to suggest that the locality probably represented a near-shore lagoon environment, and that the museum would likely be back to do some more work there at a later date. Unfortunately, we were unable to do so that summer because of the seasonally rising water levels of the lake, which flooded the site, but I've been told that my friend and I will be invited to assist with the operation again this following season. As for the fossil, it has since been delivered to McGill University to be CT scanned. Apparently, distinguishing the bone from the matrix has been long and tedious work, and not much news has reached us since the specimen was delivered some time last September. Here is an individual slice from the CT scan, from near the back of the braincase - notice how porous the bone material is, which is apparently another indicator that this skull belonged to a juvenile: I have been in close correspondence with the paleontologist from the Royal Sask. Museum who will be writing the paper to describe the find, but everything is more or less at a standstill until the work on the CT scan is finished. It's been a rather long wait, but I'm looking forward to its publication - I have been told that the museum intends to hold a press conference after the specimen has been described, and that my friend and I will be credited and involved in the reveal. So far, the museum has kept everything about the discovery deliberately vague, aside from a brief mention in a press conference, which informed an article that circulated around the Canadian media late last summer: https://nationalpost.com/news/canada/scientists-in-saskatchewan-discover-new-multimillion-year-old-fossils It's been an exciting and fulfilling experience overall, and I can't wait to get back into the field, this time with a more meticulous and careful attitude, knowing that there's scientific potential to be had from my future contributions. Anyway, here are some more photos from the lab at the RSM, with scale bar: Decapod claw: Crinoid crown: Thanks for your attention.
  2. Elasmosaurus Tooth Repair

    I received an awesome set of Moroccan matrices from @caldigger (thanks again!) that included a cracked elasmosaurus tooth. I didn't consolidate the tooth before prepping, as the matrix surrounding the tooth was far harder than the rest of the block, leading me to believe it had been sufficiently consolidated. It split at the crack whole handling it before prep work even begun, so I continued with the rest of the tooth and got the rest out pretty cleanly. The fossil isn't valuable, so I'm not too worried about perfection! Its all part of the learning experience for me. My question is about the correct order to go about repairing this tooth. When you line up the pieces, there is still a small hole from a missing section, and I suppose filling it with the matrix and then adding a layer of Paraloid dilute would be the best way to go? So here is my (tentative) plan of repair: Consolidate the pieces in the dilute Super glue the bits back together as cleanly as possible Fill in the cracks with wet matrix (?) Let it dry, then gently coat again with the dilute solution Would exposing it to the dilute twice be overkill? And I know acetone tends to dissolve super glue, but I assume the glue would hold if it's inside the tooth and the second coat of Paraloid goes on just the outer layer after it has all dried? Hopefully I explained my intentions well, and I'm looking for ideas as to what would be the best order to attempt these steps in or otherwise a preferable method (if there is one) of repair!
  3. From a plesiosaur?

    From all the comparing Ive done, i think it almost looks exactly right, except I haven't been able to find any vertebrae with the things on the bottom(chevrons?) shaped like that; that 90degree bend. Is that familiar to anyone? Is that something that appears on plesiosaurs or not? (no better angle of the chevron(?)on the other side)
  4. Elasmosaur jaw?

    Could this be a plesiosaur(elasmosaurus) jaw? I tried comparing but it's hard to see the picture of jaws in ideal positions and angles and such. Also, with so many extreme teeth it can be hard to see perfectly in a lot of pictures. (Location-wise and all, it could be, this is just about the physical jaw itself)
  5. Some Preparations And Some Bases

    Hello everyone, I would like to present some preparations and display A. Basilosaurus (Eocene age - South Morocco) 1. Preparation 2. Display
  6. Khouribgha, Morocco is a treasure trove of fossils, especially in reptilian teeth. Recently I came to acquire an Elasmosaurus tooth from Khouribgha, Morocco. However, I am not aware if that place actually yields Elasmosaurus fossils. is it more likely I have a mis-identified Plesiosaurus mauritanicus tooth?
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