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We're having a baby!

This is the second, of three, new species of marine turtles I've discovered. It will be the holotype and is in the process of being published. It came from the local Chandler Bridge Formation which is Early Oligocene in age. When I first brought it home it was in a plaster jacket. I removed the plaster from the top of the jacket and let it dry for almost a month. Once the Chandler Bridge material is dry it can be easily removed with denatured alcohol, or acetone, and a fine brush. Mrs. Bum gets excited when I bring home fossil turtles. I think it stems from a small pet turtle she had as a kid. Just don't mention toilet and turtles in the same sentence and you'll be okay. She had four rowdy younger brothers. Enough said on that topic. One evening, after a few hours of working on this specimen, I decided to take a break. Since the material was coming off so easily I decided to ask Mrs. Bum if she wanted to try her hand at it. With a gleam in her eye she snatched the brush and sent me off to watch TV. About an hour later I heard a scream from the kitchen where she was working. Before I could get out of my seat she came running up and yelled "I've found a baby turtle"! This would have been great news because baby fossil turtles rarely show up in offshore deposits. I was dragged by the arm back to the kitchen to see this miracle. It turned out that she had uncovered the top of the head of the original turtle. The pattern looked like a small turtle shell. Mrs. Bum was disappointed. But I assured her that it was still a great find. I knew from years of collecting turtles locally that it was a new species. Interestingly, just like the previous turtle I wrote about, this specimen also had shark attack marks on the back of its shell and no hind limbs. Another victim of the oceans food chain. It was eventually removed, hardened, and given a museum number. Do you think Mrs. Bum will be happy when she finds out I've named it after her? Then it will be her "Little Baby" for sure.
Location Dorchester County, South Carolina, USA

Date Added10/27/2006

The turtle turned out to be nearly complete. The hind legs and mandible were the only things missing.
This is what Mrs. Bum thought was a baby turtle. She had only removed matrix from the top section when she made her initial identification. Time for new glasses Mrs. Bum? Don't tell her I said that!
Luckily, I found this skull about a year later. It's from the same species and has the "missing" mandible attached. It will be include as the paratype. I keep good data on my fossils. This skull looks like the original, but could in fact be a distant relative. Without the rest of the body it's hard to tell if it's a new species itself. I had documentation proving that they both were from the same locality and horizon. So DOCUMENT YOUR FOSSILS!

The Omega-Rack
The Omega-Rack
The Angustidens Hole
The Angustidens Hole
I’m a digging maniac..
I’m a digging maniac..





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