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Re: Mummified Dinosaurs?

>I knew I had forgotten one major question in my last barrage:
>More than once I have read about "mummified" dinosaurs, but without any
>explanation. Everytime I read it, I go "HUH???". I mean after 65+ million
>years, you can find an animal mummified like one of those mammoths from
>Is this also just a catchy expression for something that has nothing whatsoever
>to do with the common notion of a mummy?

        Contrary to mummufied mammoths from Siberia, in which the soft
tissues, such as skin and muscles ARE organic matter, more or less decayed
and dried, the "dinosaur mummies" from the late Cretaceous of North America
are formed of a fossilized skeleton with some IMPRESSIONS of the skins,
which means that it is just a CAST, with no organic matter associated. It
is the same mechanism of formation than a footprint.
        However, reports of organic matter (at least organic carbon) from
fossil skins of dinosaurs have been made for an upper Jurassic sauropod
from North America, and a Scelidosaur from England, but this is rather
unusual. To my knowledge, no biochemical investigation has been made on
these samples.



                   Herve BOCHERENS

          Universite Pierre et Marie Curie
               Biogeochimie Isotopique
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