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Matthew Myerscough
Hi all,

Found yesterday at Lavernock point by my girlfriend - is this a Plesiosaur vertebra? 

Looks unusual to us for 2 reasons, firstly because the hole (neural canal?) seems so large compared with the solid bit of the vertebra, and secondly because the vertebra appears to be tapered (see pic where I'm holding it), rather than the usual cylindrical shape I have seen.

Perhaps vert from near the head?

Few other recent finds posted below.  Thanks for interest!

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Few other recent finds below.  Next one is very thick, cylindrical shaped.  Too thick for rib, so I'm thinking section of a long bone?  Found yesterday at Lavernock.

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The rest found at Penarth a few weeks back.

Plesi vert
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Tiny vert - Ichthyosaur or something else like fish or shark?

20200823_084814.jpg  20200823_084822.jpg  20200823_084826.jpg 
Unknown big lump of bone - can't work out what it is or from, probably plesi?

20200823_084647.jpg  20200823_084700.jpg  20200823_084725.jpg 
and vert in matrix, probably Ichthyosaur

20200823_092245.jpg 
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Dirty Pete
Hi Matthew, seems like the bone experts have abandoned us. Could the 'tapered' centrum just be broken off in which case if it were symmetrical it'd be bow tie shaped. Crocodile??
If you get no joy suggest you send a pic to the boffin at Cardiff museum https://museum.wales/staff/172/Cindy-Howells/  

Pete.
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Narlgoth
Great finds! Still don't have a bone from anything! XD
- Brad
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Matthew Myerscough
Thanks both!

Yes Pete I think you could be right, it's probably just tapered because part is missing.  Also noticed that there are transverse holes which link into the neural canal, these are also quite large.  Will clean it up and try and post some better pics / try museum.

Matthew
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Matthew Myerscough
Glad I took your advice Pete and contacted the museum.

They have said it is a really exciting find and potentially belongs to a Pleistocene mammal, e.g. deer, aurochs, horse etc.

We hope to get further information / ID once the museum is open again and staff have access to their reference papers.

Few additional pics below for those who are interested, I've cleaned off some more of the seaweed.

Matthew
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Dirty Pete
Had half an inkling that it was something special but I was still in the Jurassic. Let us know when you get an answer.
Great pics.....
Pete. 
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Matthew Myerscough
Thanks Pete! Yes I had no idea it was possible to find Pleistocene stuff in Wales.

Matthew
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nomadiclifeguide
Me neither Matthew, taught me something here! Great find.
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Matthew Myerscough
So we just had a reply from the Natural History Museum in London, and 3 experts there have all commented to say they think it might be dinosaur (theropod)...

Not sure what to think now!  To my non expert eye it looks more similar to Pleistocene mammal vertebrae which I've seen online, but still not found anything with the large transverse holes into the neural canal (I don't think these are shallow holes which have been eroded, as from close inspection the outer cortex is visible, so was originally like this when animal was alive I think).

Will update again once the museum in Cardiff is open and an expert has had chance to see actual fossil rather than looking at photos

Matthew
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Dirty Pete
Exciting stuff, the plot thickens......I think 60% of Dracoraptor's still missing.....which fell out of the cliff nearby....

Pete.
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Gary W
Did you take it to the NHM or just email a photo?
It really looks much more like pleistocene mammal than dinosaur, the give away would be the density / weight.
Dinosaur would be much heavier more dense.
NHM experts are not always correct butwithout handling the specimen impossible to be certain.
Gary
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Matthew Myerscough
Emailed 3 photos to the museum. I appreciate it's tricky to ID from photos. Yes it's slightly lighter / less dense than marine reptile bones we have of similar size, so that would also support Pleistocene mammal as you say!
Thanks
Matthew
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