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Help with old, heavy bone id

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Help with old, heavy bone id

Postby tlongren » Mon Aug 19, 2013 12:57 am

Hi,

I came across this vertebrae today while walking in the South Skunk river in central Iowa. It was pretty much covered in sand, but the water is really low right now. 2 inches in some places. Average depth is probably about 1 foot right now.

Anyway, one photo is attached. The rest can be seen in this imgur album:
http://imgur.com/a/odIf9

First thing I noticed was it's weight. It's really heavy, even after drying out. It almost looks like it's starting to petrify in places. I'm sorry if the images aren't very good as I haven't been able to look at them very well yet. If you'd like higher quality photos just let me know and I'll get some proper ones.

Thanks!!
IMG_20130818_185027.jpg
The bone.
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Postby animartco » Fri Aug 23, 2013 10:55 am

I wish people would use rulers to indicate size. I don't know what that blue thing is. The bone looks like half a hip to me.
To get an idea of weight, do a displacement test, ( get a measuring jug and find a stone that raises the water to the same level as the bone) with the bone and a stone and then weigh them. If the weight is more or less the same it's a fossil.
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Postby tlongren » Fri Aug 23, 2013 4:14 pm

I'll get more photos with a ruler for comparison tonight.

Will also weigh it alone and do a displacement test. Will report back.

Thank you for the suggestions, animartco.

Oh, the blue thing is a standard size BIC lighter.
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Postby animartco » Sat Aug 24, 2013 11:59 am

Good Luck. Hope it's a fossil.
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Postby tlongren » Mon Aug 26, 2013 9:02 pm

Kinda what I'm hoping, too! Will take some more photos with a yard or meter stick tonight and upload for ya. :)
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Postby tlongren » Tue Sep 03, 2013 3:48 pm

Here's what Matthew G Hill from the Archaeology department at Iowa State University said:
Nice specimen. It’s an axis vertebra (that is, the second cervical) from a bison.
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Postby tlongren » Tue Sep 03, 2013 3:49 pm

Mods can close this thread if they wish.
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Postby animartco » Sat Sep 07, 2013 2:22 pm

Whoops so it was a vertibra. Do they still have bison in Iowa? It could still be a fossil...just. Unusual bone anyway!
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