There was still snow on the ground this morning, but we can’t be deterred by a little cold! By 8:30 am we were on site and shoveling snow, and then sediment, out of our pit.
We actually left a number of bones in the ground last year, protected beneath a winter jacket. That meant we could get into the bonebed pretty quickly, and by lunchtime we had removed the winter jacket. A few more hours digging and we had uncovered several bones (top). Here’s the same image marked up:
The bone outlined in green appears to be the coronoid process from a baleen whale dentary (lower jaw). I’m not sure what the mass of stuff outlined in red is, but it may be part of the ventral side of a skull; we found cranial elements in this area last year. I’ll need to uncover more of it to know for sure. The blue bones are various other unidentified bits and pieces. The one furthest to the right is particularly intriguing; here’s a closeup:
I have no idea what this bone is.
On the other side of the pit (2 feet away) Mike Morriss was uncovering what appears to be part of yet another baleen whale dentary (we pulled 3 of them out of this pit last year):
The same image with the bone outlined:
The weather is supposed to be great for the next few days, so I expect to make good progress.
And here’s a little eye candy from this morning. I’m not sure why this happens, but occasionally at Carmel Church after a snow or a heavy frost we get beautiful elongate ice crystals growing on the surface. That was the case for a few hours this morning, until it warmed up and the ice started melting: