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Found a skeleton - what is it? Turtle?

Discussion in 'Nature' started by MikeR_GF1, Jul 20, 2012.

  1. MikeR_GF1

    MikeR_GF1 Guest

    My home is surrounded by trees and wetland. The latter includes a protected species, so the wetland is protected as well. While spraying herbicide on invasive multiflora roses and oriental bittersweet (I abandon organic methods when it comes to aggressive invasives), I noticed this skeletal remains had been washed out of the earth.

    I carefully cleaned it up, let it dry, then tried to learn what animal it may have been. I say turtle. My wife says skull, maybe a small deer. Neither of us can find photos that match, either in our books or on the Web.

    Any guesses, folks?

    Top view-
    DMC-GF1    ---    20mm    f/3.2    1/2500s    ISO 200

    Bottom view-
    DMC-GF1    ---    20mm    f/3.2    1/2500s    ISO 200

    Side view-
    DMC-GF1    ---    20mm    f/3.2    1/3200s    ISO 200

    Closeup side-
    DMC-GF1    ---    0mm    f/1.0    1/160s    ISO 200

    Closeup underside-
    DMC-GF1    ---    0mm    f/1.0    1/125s    ISO 200

    Closeup ribs-
    DMC-GF1    ---    0mm    f/1.0    1/125s    ISO 200

    Closeup spinal cord, and what look like vent holes- or is this a Klingon starship?
    DMC-GF1    ---    0mm    f/1.0    1/160s    ISO 200

    Closeup side & maybe ribs-
    DMC-GF1    ---    0mm    f/1.0    1/125s    ISO 200

    Macro of "neck" where the vertebra is broken-
    DMC-GF1    ---    0mm    f/1.0    1/13s    ISO 200

    1st 3 are with the PL20. Next 5 are with Vivitar 28mm "close focus". Last one is the weird Jupiter-12 28mm with a Nikon "S" adapter and a macro ring.
  2. jloden

    jloden Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 15, 2012
    Hunterdon County, NJ
    Pretty sure what you have there is a bird skeleton of some kind, but that's just an unscientific guess based on what it looks like. Looks to me like hips and a pelvis at the bottom, and the structure would make sense for a bird that stands on 2 feet and has a tail.
  3. Hikari

    Hikari Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 26, 2010
    I would also say a bird of some kind.
  4. jloden

    jloden Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 15, 2012
    Hunterdon County, NJ
    I think what you have is a synsacrum of a bird:

    <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/25980517@N03/4321625932/" title="bird synsacrum by Lynette S., on Flickr"> 4321625932_54b616b15f. "357" height="500" alt="bird synsacrum"></a>

  5. MikeR_GF1

    MikeR_GF1 Guest

    I think you may have it.

    Really surprised that my wife didn't offer that one - she's a birder. She thought it was a skull.

    This place some decades ago was a farm, so it could be chicken or turkey. About ten years ago we had a small harem of wild turkeys that made our woods home. Gone now - either coyotes that have moved in, or feral cats, may have gotten them.

    • Like Like x 1
  6. Kingsfan

    Kingsfan Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Nov 22, 2010
    highland park, CA
    • Like Like x 1
  7. jloden

    jloden Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 15, 2012
    Hunterdon County, NJ
    Funny part is I actually did try to google "raptor skeleton" when I first suspected it was a bird, and all that came up was velociraptor pictures. :rolleyes: 
  8. sphexx

    sphexx Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 19, 2010
    Harrogate, Yorkshire
    I'm sure it is bid pelvis as mentioned above. However, since you have good photo on a plain ground (though white is better) you could open google images search and drag the photo into the search box and it will find similar images for you.

    However, this does not work very well when I tried it with the second image -- it found a lot of images with much blue sky a lot of which were birds of course but that was misleading! I have seen it work well but this time it struggled. Cropping the image worked a little better.
  9. MikeR_GF1

    MikeR_GF1 Guest

    Thank you for that tip on Google search.

    Like just about all software, I still know what I knew well of Google when it was first introduced, but with all the other things they've added since long ago, my percentage of "known" has shrunk from somewhat North of "most" to maybe 1% at best.
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