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Re: Diatryma tracks discovered in Washington state
> These post-Cretaceous theropod
> tracks may be of interest.
> This discovery pretty much
> confirms that an earlier find
> of a supposed Diatryma track
> in Washington state was not
> a hoax.
One fossil does not (can not) confirm the authenticity of another purported
I'll agree that the track that Mustoe and his workers found is likely of a
large Eocene bird, but as Mustoe noted, the authenticity of the Patterson track
is still problematic, based on the "chiseled" appearance of certain portions of
the slab (I've seen it in person, and it does have a "stepped" margin on some
of the "toe" prints).
It is possible that the Patterson slab is authentic, but the way that the slab
was handled after it was found has created ambiguity.
Whether an authentic print or not, the older discovery is a good example of
what an amateur should *not* do when finding a fossil. Such specimens should
be minimally prepared (better yet, not prepared at all), and any later prep.
work should be left to a professional preparator.
The newly found track is indeed an exiting find. I have scoured those outcrops
over the decades, and I never found anything.
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