Dirt and Bones

My friend’s family owns a farm in central Tennessee and lost most of their livestock to some mysterious mass death many years ago. As a student in Biophysical and Forensic Anthropology, my interest in traveling for bones was peaked. We took a road trip to collect dirt, skulls and various other long bones. I passed many of them on to my professor, who sent some into the lab.

The Farm

062

020 (3)

 

001

Still living, bless.

 

 

The Collection
nnn

 

The Horse

009b

Well-articulated mandible and skull

 

006a

Inferior view

 

 

The Others 

002 (2)

 

 

008 (2)

071

Deer vertebrae

003 (2)

Domesticated goat skull

 

We collected around three dozen samples altogether but some were still in active stages of decay or otherwise too fragile to transport. Cause of mass death remains unknown, but likely an invasive fungus/bacteria in the soil or in the creek that runs through the center of the property.

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