Jump to content
Norvik

River mud find

Recommended Posts

Norvik

I am a new person and not a paleontoligist.  While swimming in the Rock River Moline Illinois 52 years ago I found this bone deeply buried in the mud.  There was much more to the find than what I could bring up, but this piece could be lifted free by unburying it with my feet.  It was in 3-4 feet of water.

it is 12 inches long and weighs 1.8 pounds.  I would appreciate any input someone has time to offer please!  All these years, I still have the bone and I do not know what it is.  I have other photos but this site will not let me upload them.

Thank You

65AF7340-77B4-41C1-AA6F-07606F07B262.jpeg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
SailingAlongToo

Leg bone from a mammal. Not sure which one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
caldigger

Wow! Beautiful patina on that thing. :wub:

 

@Harry Pristis

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Norvik
9 minutes ago, caldigger said:

Wow! Beautiful patina on that thing. :wub:

 

@Harry Pristis

It has been varnished.  Dumb kid done it.  I know it is a mammal bone.  Can anyone suggest a forum more appropriate for my post?  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
caldigger

Patience. You only posted this less than an hour ago.

I have alerted a very knowledgeable member regarding bone ID. More members will likely chime in as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ClearLake

Could use some other views, but looks like a right femur, probably from a cow/bovid. It’s the right size and it doesn’t look like a horse.  You can upload other pictures by closing, then getting back in to the forum. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ynot
2 hours ago, Norvik said:

 I have other photos but this site will not let me upload them.

Thank You

There is a 3.95 megabyte picture size limit per post. You can reduce the picture size to around 1 meg to get more pictures in a single post. Pictures smaller than that are hard to view.

You can add more pictures in the reply to thread.

If You still get blocked try refreshing the page.

 

I agree with the above ID and have doubt it is very old.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Norvik
9 hours ago, ClearLake said:

Could use some other views, but looks like a right femur, probably from a cow/bovid. It’s the right size and it doesn’t look like a horse.  You can upload other pictures by closing, then getting back in to the forum. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Harry Pristis

This appears to be a subadult (because of the separated epiphysis) bovid femur.  It would take more research to distinguish cow from bison in this case.  Horse illustration here for comparison.

 

What is the beige stuff in the lumen in the proximal head?

 

 

bovid_distal_femur_B.JPG

horse_dist_femur.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Norvik
2 hours ago, Harry Pristis said:

This appears to be a subadult (because of the separated epiphysis) bovid femur.  It would take more research to distinguish cow from bison in this case.  Horse illustration here for comparison.

 

What is the beige stuff in the lumen in the proximal head?

 

 

bovid_distal_femur_B.JPG

horse_dist_femur.JPG

The beige stuff appears to be bone marrow and it is hard as a rock.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Norvik

Another camera shot.

056FAA99-3FD2-4928-B7EC-DF8C7AE50245.jpeg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Norvik

Another photo

D5B47599-1649-455E-BBC2-515335B81FE8.jpeg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Harry Pristis
1 hour ago, Norvik said:

 

1 hour ago, Norvik said:

Another camera shot.

056FAA99-3FD2-4928-B7EC-DF8C7AE50245.jpeg

 

This is a good illustration of the fusion process as the animal matures.  On the left is the bone shaft.  The suture represents the growth plate. The bone on the right is the epiphysis.  As a juvenile, these bits of bone remain separated by the growth plate.  When the animal matures (is finished growing), the growth plate disappears, and the shaft and the epiphysis fuse.  In older adults, the suture line may be fully obscured.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Norvik
6 hours ago, Norvik said:

5BB7DCC8-86EE-4217-8B2B-936F97F6AB58.jpeg

The center is rock hard and appears to be bone marrow?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Harry Pristis
On ‎3‎/‎12‎/‎2019 at 3:08 PM, Norvik said:

The center is rock hard and appears to be bone marrow?

 

Bone marrow is predominately fat.  Marrow does not preserve as lumen-filler, particularly when exposed like this material.  I don't know what the material is, but it is almost certainly exogenous.  A drop of vinegar or other acid will test for calcite.  Perhaps it is just a clump of uniformly-colored silica sand.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Norvik
1 hour ago, Harry Pristis said:

 

Bone marrow is predominately fat.  Marrow does not preserve as lumen-filler, particularly when exposed like this material.  I don't know what the material is, but it is almost certainly exogenous.  A drop of vinegar or other acid will test for calcite.  Perhaps it is just a clump of uniformly-colored silica sand.

 

 

I did the vinegar test.  The tan substance remains hard for the most part, but soften a little bit near one edge.  I could remove a tiny piece that disappeared when rolled between my fingers but like coconut butter would.  It didn't feel sandy.  The sharp knife I used made the surface a little less smooth.  Does this mean it is not calcite? Nor silica sand?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Harry Pristis
44 minutes ago, Norvik said:

I did the vinegar test.  The tan substance remains hard for the most part, but soften a little bit near one edge.  I could remove a tiny piece that disappeared when rolled between my fingers but like coconut butter would.  It didn't feel sandy.  The sharp knife I used made the surface a little less smooth.  Does this mean it is not calcite? Nor silica sand?

 

Well, I don't know what the yellowish substance is.  Maybe it's 52 y.o. congealed fat!  Not calcite if it didn't fizz.  Not silica if it acted like coconut butter.  Somehow, this story is not congealing either.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ynot
3 hours ago, Harry Pristis said:

 

Well, I don't know what the yellowish substance is.  Maybe it's 52 y.o. congealed fat!  Not calcite if it didn't fizz.  Not silica if it acted like coconut butter.  Somehow, this story is not congealing either.

If the bone is only a year or less old , I could see the yellowish substance as being some decomposed marrow.

Scrape some out and see what happens when You hold it in a flame.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ClearLake
4 hours ago, Harry Pristis said:

Well, I don't know what the yellowish substance is.  Maybe it's 52 y.o. congealed fat! 

 

50 minutes ago, ynot said:

If the bone is only a year or less old , I could see the yellowish substance as being some decomposed marrow.

We know the bone is at least 52 years old and was at the bottom of a river, I think bone marrow is pretty much out of the question as @Harry Pristis suggested earlier.  Could it be a glob of varnish that the "dumb kid" did many years ago?  I know I have some varnish in cans in the garage that looks pretty much like that!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ynot
1 hour ago, ClearLake said:

the bone is at least 52 years old

Missed that part.:doh!:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Norvik

I appreciate the input on my bone very much!  I will see if a piece comes out and can check it with flame.  Never thought about the varnish drying like that!  Wonder how I could test the “varnish” possibility.  If the fire melts the piece I set flame to would that indicate varnish if it melts?  Though I found it 52 years ago, the animal didn’t die in the deep mud during the 10 years we lived there.  It was so deep I couldn’t remove any more of it with my foot.  It would be much older than 52 years.  The river where it was found is at Blackhawk State Park in IL.  An area where there were many Indians living and filled with an artifact museum.  Would there be any way to date this bone?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
steelhead9

In the very first photo there appears to be a bit of the same substance oozing out of the suture crack. Could shellac have been used instead of varnish, or some type of glue?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
ynot
2 hours ago, Norvik said:

Wonder how I could test the “varnish” possibility.  If the fire melts the piece I set flame to would that indicate varnish if it melts?

The smell will be more telling, but varnish should melt to some extent.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×