We started our second day by removing the live critters from the pit (above). Mice and other animals often hang out under the tarps we use to cover the site at night.
After the mouse left we removed the temporary jacket from last April and began expanding the pit to the east and north (into the wall). This is a pretty repetitive and routine part of the excavation, as a lot of time is spent removing the last few centimeters of overlying sediment with small tools. Even so, we removed a few interesting bones, such as this fish element (I’m not sure what part of the fish it is):
We also recovered a nice example of our only invertebrate from Carmel Church (at least from the Calvert); an inarticulate brachiopod:
Below is one of the new bones we uncovered in the back of the pit. I’m not sure yet what it is, but the following is a list of possibilities (in decreasing order of likelihood):
1) a whale atlas vertebra
2) a basioccipital (the bottom of the braincase
3) a more posterior whale vertebra
4) something else
We’ll continue expanding the pit into the wall tomorrow, assuming the weather holds (the forecast is grim).