Friday mystery object #35


After last week’s exceptionally tricky object I’ve decided to give you something that should prove a challenge, but which will hopefully be a bit more straightforward than the last one:

This specimen is about 7cm at its widest point and it was chosen by Cat, an osteoarchaeologist who has been volunteering at the Horniman with me for the last couple of months – she’s helping me to consolidate and organise our osteology (that’s bone) collections.

Do you have any idea what this might be? Feel free to make your suggestions and ask questions below – I will do my best to answer, although it may take a bit longer than usual as I have to give five Science Week talks in a row today (for the second time this week). Good luck!

23 thoughts on “Friday mystery object #35

  1. I’ll kick off by saying that it’s a lower jaw of something I wouldn’t like to meet in an alley at night.

  2. I’ll continue by saying that it’s the dentary of something, with a very large Meckel’s canal, and as I can’t see any jaw articulations, it’s not a mammal. Dentition like that dosn’t look reptilian or amphibian either, in which case it’s some mutha of a fish.

    • Excellent reasoning – my one comment at this stage is that specimens have a nasty habit of being damaged or even deliberately cut to show features of interest (or indeed to enable them to be mounted – at least in the bad old days). This means that lack of a jaw articulation could potentially be an artefact of the specimen’s history. I’m not saying that this is the case (although I am also not saying it isn’t)…

  3. I know what they’re from, at least, I know what their original owner looks like. Just struggling to find the damned name.

    Have I ever told you about how despite doing a year + of a marine biology degree (before switching to biochem/micro) I managed to miss EVERY lecture on fish?

    Anyway…it’s an ugly sod – perhaps a Wolf fish?

  4. Pingback: Updating the Blogroll « A Primate of Modern Aspect

  5. Pingback: Friday mystery object #53 answer(ish) « Zygoma

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