[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index][Subject Index][Author Index]
Nova and this thread
The PBS show about Sue was interesting and seemed to present both sides of this
complex issue. I enjoyed it bcause there was some digging of bones and showing
of the same Hell Creek formation the team I am a member of digs in. Also we got
to see the some of the bones of Sue, which we may never again, unless you're
Someone asked how many hadrosaurian ribs "science" needs before "science" has
enough, which was answered that "science" needs all of them for the broadening
of "science's" base of knowledge. I would say that when "science" gets so many
ribs in its collection, no matter the facility, and lay unseen for decades then
"science" is not served. Those of you that do no field work cannot tell those
of us that work our asses off to recover these bones that our efforts are
appreciated when that hadrosaur rib is again entombed, and maybe never seen
again. This is what I classify as refossilization, and is much sadder than
seeing the rubble of a naturally erroded bone. At least when those fragments
are seen for what they are someone might find more that isn't. We diggers want
that disassociated rib to be seen, and if stout enough touched! Yes we become
emotionally involved with those bones and beyond the "science" we love gently
lifting them from the subtle blows of mother nature. "Science" is for and about
humanity, after all we invented it.
I still say there should be an easily accessable liscensing program to allow
educated and ethical collectors to enter onto public land (USA) in search of
fossils. I do strongly feel there should be a reporting system, a followup
survey, a regional palenotologist (maybe down to the county level) to oversee
things, and a clear policy against the sale of rare and unusual specimens. This
will keep fossils from rotting away, spread more fossils before the eyes of the
world for pure enjoyment, "science" will retrive a broader data set if the
reporting system is right, the resource will be better served and lands better
protected if incorperated into existing land use law, and paleontology would
become a less dicey way to use a degree. Important sites, or areas, could be
set aside on a basis similar to mining laws. Paleontological claims if you
will, that would establish and protect anyones work including museums.
If a replica of a fossil is supposed to bring a collector as much enjoyment as
the real thing I would point out that CZ replicas of diamonds don't cut it
(ha). The warmth and luster of a real dinosaur bone is as unique as a diamond
to me, and actually more treasured. I don't want a museum piece a holotype, nor
do I suspect do many other of us nonpros, we that actually care about this
"science" are happy with the bits and pieces. Is it such a high price to pay to
allow this trivial ownership in return for the real contribution private
collectors give to this "science".
We've made all these points before, and we seem no closer to an understanding.
This is the saddest part of all, when we should be working to close the gap
between acadamia and the private sector we seem to be driving in a wedge. Lest
we make the mistake of leaving this issue in the hands of politicians, as we
have so many other things, we need to work to bring all sides of this to an
understanding. How? I have no absolute answer but more understanding on all
sides couldn't hurt.
I would love to work for the BHI. Finding and extracting dinosaur fossils in
the Hell Creek Formation is something I enjoy and do well. Until something like
that happens I'll work with Steve and Russ in what ever capacity they need.
Bseides, we're doin' some good work on our own. If we had the time and
resources we could be objects of inquiry and harrassment too <grin>.
Roger A. Stephenson