Posts Tagged 'desert'

Buried Protoceratops



So you might be getting a bit sick of Protoceratops specimens at the moment, but this one is a bit special. Based on the first picture you can see that like some of the others, it’s nearly complete, well articulated and in good condition. The pose might look a little odd, but this is because of how it has been left to facilitate preparation. When orientated as found in the field (and as originally preserved) we see something rather more dramatic.


Yep, it looks rather like this animal was buried and tried, and failed, to get out. The formation is apparently made up of aeolian (wind deposited) sediments, so this is not something that drowned or was buried in a river channel etc., but was trapped in a sandstorm, collapsing sand dune or something similar. The head is up and the body down, implying that it survived long enough to try and make an escape but never succeeded. There are, apparently (I’ve not seen them) a number of specimens like this in other collections, and I’d love to see if there are any studies on how often this thing happens now, though I dare say it’s an incredibly hard thing to find out.


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