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Mantelliceras

Mosasaur Jaw

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Mantelliceras

Hello everyone!

I just acquired this piece but the only thing I know is that it's a mosasaur from morocco and it shows the lower jaw and the pterigoid teeth from the upper jaw. Can any mosasaur experts here help me identify the species? I'm thinking of prognathodon maybe?. Also as far as I know it's not fake or composite but would be great if you could confirm it.

Thank you very much for your help, very appreciated! :)

 

Greetings from Spain.

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LordTrilobite

Looks like Prognathodon. But some of those teeth seem dubious.

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thejavelinman

The back teeth certainly look like Prognathodon.

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Mantelliceras
3 hours ago, LordTrilobite said:

Looks like Prognathodon. But some of those teeth seem dubious.

How dubious? like re-attached? I wanna know if it's 100% original.

Thanks

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jeannie55

Seeing your post reminded me that I have a few of those teeth and a broken jaw in the back of a fossil drawer. The teeth were in the jaw but I allowed my granddaughter to take them for show and tell at a summer program at the university on the hill. Since she as the youngest by four years in the program, she wanted to fit in with the other gifted and talented future paleontologist.  Sadly, she allowed the children to hold the jaw and one dropped it and broke the jaw and the matrix. I think it’s time to get those out and see what can be fixed. 

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LabRatKing
11 minutes ago, Mantelliceras said:

How dubious? like re-attached? I wanna know if it's 100% original.

Thanks

This one looks pretty legit. The plaster used to protect it from the extraction site is still in place it appears. I would be interested to see close ups of the areas circled. Also some blacklighting might help. 

2.thumb.jpg.e0ce9b944c3ca68d1968c77e40a7d498.jpg

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LordTrilobite
52 minutes ago, Mantelliceras said:

How dubious? like re-attached? I wanna know if it's 100% original.

Thanks

So, these photos aren't detailed enough to tell. But the excavated matrix around the teeth in like the shape of a little hollow is generally a sign that the teeth do not belong there and have been composited in. There are few teeth here that have the matrix excavated around them in such a way. Overall the jaw looks quite good.

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Mantelliceras
18 hours ago, LabRatKing said:

This one looks pretty legit. The plaster used to protect it from the extraction site is still in place it appears. I would be interested to see close ups of the areas circled. Also some blacklighting might help. 

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I took pictures of the areas mentioned, thanks for your help:

índice1.jpg

índice2.jpg

índice3.jpg

índice4.jpg

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LordTrilobite

Looks pretty good. I see no obvious composited teeth in these closeups. Even so, judging from just photos like this isn't conclusive.

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LabRatKing
34 minutes ago, LordTrilobite said:

Looks pretty good. I see no obvious composited teeth in these closeups. Even so, judging from just photos like this isn't conclusive.

I agree with this. Working from photos makes it difficult.

 

None of the usual red flags are visible. The presence of fossils that aren't mosasaur and the very non-conformal matrix make me feel like this is one is the real deal in-situ.

 

If it is a fabrication, I'd like to hire the tech to make one for me, as I would buy this and extract and assemble the jaw for display.

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Mantelliceras
1 hour ago, LordTrilobite said:

Looks pretty good. I see no obvious composited teeth in these closeups. Even so, judging from just photos like this isn't conclusive.

 

42 minutes ago, LabRatKing said:

I agree with this. Working from photos makes it difficult.

 

None of the usual red flags are visible. The presence of fossils that aren't mosasaur and the very non-conformal matrix make me feel like this is one is the real deal in-situ.

 

If it is a fabrication, I'd like to hire the tech to make one for me, as I would buy this and extract and assemble the jaw for display.

Thank you very much for your help, I agree with you.

While looking at the matrix, near the white plaster I could spot plastic coming out of it. I think the sand around the plaster has been reconstructed with composite at some parts so that there are no holes between the plaster and the fossil, but I think it's just the surrouding area next to the plaster not the whole piece.

Also I spotted this tooth that doesnt look very mosasaurish to me, maybe because it's from the rear part of the jaw? see pictures

índice5.jpg

índice6.jpg

índice7.jpg

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LordTrilobite

Yes it's common even for completely genuine specimens to be "filled" in for either aesthetics or stability.

 

That tooth in your last photo is indeed not a mosasaur tooth. That's from a shark. Very common to see those mixed in. Nearly every block of matrix I've prepped that contained Moroccan mosasaurs all had shark material in it as well.

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LabRatKing
1 minute ago, Mantelliceras said:

 

Thank you very much for your help, I agree with you.

While looking at the matrix, near the white plaster I could spot plastic coming out of it. I think the sand around the plaster has been reconstructed with composite at some parts so that there are no holes between the plaster and the fossil, but I think it's just the surrouding area next to the plaster not the whole piece.

Also I spotted this tooth that doesnt look very mosasaurish to me, maybe because it's from the rear part of the jaw? see pictures

índice5.jpg

índice6.jpg

índice7.jpg

What is under the plastic? Is it sheeting, or something thicker. Also, what would you say the weight of the specimen is?

I think you may be correct, they may have added on to the slab. It also could be leftovers from the underlayment cast to protect and stabilize the specimen, which was then doctored.

But what lies beneath will be a big indicator. (save all your bits to glue back in, this is a really nice display piece)

 

As for the other tooth, I have no idea....but we have some folks around here that will know.

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Mantelliceras
11 minutes ago, LabRatKing said:

What is under the plastic? Is it sheeting, or something thicker. Also, what would you say the weight of the specimen is?

I think you may be correct, they may have added on to the slab. It also could be leftovers from the underlayment cast to protect and stabilize the specimen, which was then doctored.

But what lies beneath will be a big indicator. (save all your bits to glue back in, this is a really nice display piece)

 

As for the other tooth, I have no idea....but we have some folks around here that will know.

I think it's just the thin layer of plastic, they put it on the fossil before adding the white plaster (the underlayment cast that you mentioned), it only shows on this part because they added a bit of composite in-between, probably to fill a hole, give stabilization to the specimen or just for aesthetic purposes, like LordTrilobite stated.
The specimen weights around 28-30 kg
:look:

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LabRatKing
Just now, Mantelliceras said:

I think it's just the thin layer of plastic, they put it on the fossil before adding the white plaster (the underlayment cast that you mentioned), it only shows on this part because they added a bit of composite in-between, probably to fill a hole, give stabilization to the specimen or just for aesthetic purposes, like LordTrilobite stated.
The specimen weights around 28-30 kg
:look:

Excellent!

 

My friend, you have an astounding piece. We tend to only get the mediocre composites on this side of the pond. I admit, I am jealous.

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