Friday mystery object #3 answer

The mystery object I showed you on Friday was this:

Dorsal view

Dorsal view

I thought I’d try a poll with options to choose between to record opinion and I’m impressed that 50% of you got it right! It was indeed a portion of armadillo shield.

No-one was taken in by the alligator or turtle options, although the globefish received 13% of votes and the beaded lizard option got 38%. The hexagonal structure on the ventral view:

Ventral view (width ~5cm)

Ventral view (width ~5cm)

was the give-away feature – it is composed of imbricated dermal ossicles that form an inflexible but strong shield. The gobefish needs sufficient flexibilty to allow it to inflate, whilst the beaded lizard needs to be able to flex its body for locomotion. The ventral view looks more like that of a turtle carapace – but obviously the dorsal view looks nothing like a turtle.

Well done those of you who got it, comiserations to those who didn’t. I leave you with some armadillo related advertising nostaglia:

[Warning: contents make irritate]

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