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466 Views 3 Replies Last post: Aug 18, 2013 2:40 PM by MikeHardman RSS
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Aug 18, 2013 12:32 PM

Are these dinosaur footprints and a dinosaur egg?

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  • Tayla,

     

    No - it is an orange!

     

    Sorry; I shouldn't be facetious.

     

    Seriously, I don't think so.

    To be more certain, I should ask you where the specimens came from.

    But in this case I am fairly sure anyway.

     

    The 'footprints' are just incidental fracture patterns in a fine-grained sedimentary rock.

    The 'egg' is a concretion. The texture in the core is not unusual. I explain about concretions in this discussion.

    Also see this discussion for another instance where a concretion is mistaken for a dinosaur egg.

     

    The human mind is excellent at seeing patterns in things. It has been an essential part of our species' survival over thousands of years, because it enables us to do things like:

    - recognize a plant which may be edible despite being surrounded by a field of others

    - see a prey animal in the bush despite its cryptic colouration

    - recognize individual humans, who may be members of our group or who may be enemies

    (and we also sense patterns in time - seasonal fruit, seasonal weather, daily visits of our prey to watering holes, etc.)

    Sometimes, however, this pattern sense leads us to see things that are not really there; or the pattern may be there but it may be false - it is not what it seems.

    That's what is leading you to see dinosaur in these objects.

     

    However, you have now honed your skill in this particular area. Next time, you will be able to make a better decision on your own. Our ancestors went through the same process - honing their skills at pattern recognition based on experience and trial-and-error.

     

    Mike

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