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3922 Views 10 Replies Last post: Mar 3, 2014 10:23 AM by jamdoughnuts RSS
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Feb 24, 2014 9:31 AM

It's a bone, but is it a fossil and what animal is it likely to be from ?

Found this loose on beach near Highcliffe Dorset following recent crazy weather.

It's definately a bone, and appears to be heavily mineralised and well, stone like, but the structure just looks too well preserved, clean and light to be a 'fossil'. But then I have no idea !

Any thoughts or comments would be welcome.

  • Nice find jamdoughnuts

    I don't know what it is from but the interesting thing is the straight end to the bone sugesting it was a domestic animal and the bone cut straight across to get the marrow out.

    It looks very old, how big is it?



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    • Yup - bone, but of what I can't say.

      The lightness strongly suggests it is recent (non-lithified), irrespective of it seeming to be mineralized (some modern bones are pretty hard).


      Somebody else here may be able to suggest what animal it came from.



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      • I don't think it's fossilised but people still collect more recent artifacts like what you have found, infact there is an internet site selling nothing but bones dredged up from the North Sea.

        In our area something like your find could be roman or anglo saxon but I only collect the bones that I find in the peat beds that are exposed when the tide goe's down, then i am sure they are 'old' and not more recent.

        I once found a skeleton in the peat, it was R,C,D and turned out to be 1000yo and the peat bed was 2000yo.

        I hope it's ok as I have attached some images of a skull I found on the Holderness Coast.



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          • Thanks for cross posting this, I very rarely wander into the fossils forum but this is quite interesting. First of all it is hollow so it is from a terrestrial rather than a marine mammal. It is also relatively flat which would only realy fit with a distal radius. There are two articular surfaces on the end which is consistent with the distal radius articulating with the separate carpal bones. The foramina for the distal nutrient artery is in the correct place for a radius. The size would be consistent with a large mammal (such as a cow).


            I hope you can see the similarity to the cow radius in this link, your specimen has been worn by the sea and I think this fully explains the differences. The radius is the top bone and the distal end is to the left of the photo (the ulna is the other way round.





            Age, no idea!!!

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            • John,


              Thanks for calling-in, and giving such an erudite reply.

              It is also very satisfying to sit back and follow an expert's thought process in an area where I have little experience and no training.



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