Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Prepping skin on WXT

A jacket of WXT, a huge Edmontosaurus specimen discovered in southern North Dakota 2002, was brought into the lab for preparation this past week. Before I could even begin, I noticed the scale pattern of the skin preserved as a film on one bone. Skin is uncommon but not unheard of in the Hell Creek Formation.
Further poking around showed scales preserved in the sandstone matrix in 3 dimensions. The scales themselves are only a few millimeters thick, and are preserved in a layer that will not separate easily. I'm now determining the extent of the skin present, and what should be done to it to best preserve it. The photo below shows one of the counterparts of the skin impression that was removed from the block.

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