Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Week 6: Pictures

No write-up at the moment, but here are some pictures from digging last Friday. Unfortunately, I wasn't there, so I'll just have to take an educated guess at what's going on, and any holes can be filled in by Cameron's post on how the day went.

The Watusi, now our primary focus for the dig (we hope to get it out by the end of the semester), as there remains far too much of the elephant's fleshy stuff.

A good look at the leg laying near the watusi's face. It's an odd one, to be sure, odder still in that it probably doesn't belong to our watusi, and is relatively complete in its articulation. Maybe a mass grave?

The mystery leg, with yet another bone that appears to be in some way associated with it (below it). My guess is that that's a pelvic bone, but we'll have to wait and see.

Extending the watusi trench further towards the road so we can uncover the rest of its body.

Bucketing out the ever-deepening watusi pit.

That beige patch is, if I'm not mistaken, some still decomposing stomach contents. Delicious!

We were being a little optimistic when we assumed the watusi was fully decomposed. As it turns out, there's a sizable amount of rotting fat, just as there was in the elephant pit.

This is, I've been told, a solid piece of fat. It goes without saying that this day is probably the worst smelling so far.

And, back on the other side of the trench, another leg! If we have time, we'll try and take whatever that is out as well.

The pit was actually filling up fast enough that it needed to be drained as it was being dug.

Trench extending and measuring.

Finally, the watusi head was ready to be removed, taken back to the lab, and cleaned. Apparently it's quite heavy, and I can vouch for the fact that it's still full of brain matter.

The skull, fully removed. The horn that was further underground has an intact horn sheath, which is nice.

Professor Costopoulos trying to load the skull into his trunk. I'm guessing it didn't work out.

The skull, back at the lab. Looking through the foramen magnum, you can see a fair amount of brain left inside.

The skull with a piece of dried up flesh still attached.

Working away in the lab trying to clean out the skull. Not only was the brain-case still full, the skull itself needed a serious toothbrushing to get most of the mud/possibly flesh off of it.

So that's all we have for now, a written update will be coming soon.
The Field School

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