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Current time:0:00Total duration:3:07

Video transcript

This specifically is the skull of a dinosaur from a group of families called the Ankylosaurus, the armored dinosaurs, if you can imagine an armadillo with a lot of spikes all over it. It's a common misconception that bones are dug in the field where they're found, but what actually happens is a researcher will be walking through deserted barren canyon land looking for bones sticking out of the rocks or weathering out. A trench is dug around the specimen, then it is wrapped in bandages so it's in plaster, which is what you see here. So this is straight from the field where it was found in Mongolia. For this material I would use small tools like these needles and things like that and some brushes to slowly work off the rock from the bone. This is soft enough where I can use these kind of needles and things like that to kind of gently work it off. We're basically chipping away until we get to the surface of the bone and then what we're doing from there is following the line of the bone around, gradually removing the rock as we're doing so. So what I'm doing is essentially just using this needle to softly work off the surface of the rock till I get to the layer of bone underneath. I've been working on this piece already for about five months already, and it's probably gonna take me another three or four to get it to the condition that the researchers want it in and every year these researchers go out to the field and collect hundreds of specimens and they bring them back here to the Museum. A lot of times we just find pieces you see here, they're just broken pieces of bones of individual dinosaurs and things like that. But once in a while we do get whole dinosaurs and this tells us very much about the anatomy. This is how we know certain dinosaurs were actually, how their bones were arranged and things like that. Using a silicon rubber, we've actually made a mold of the skull here. And then filling it in with an epoxy resin, we basically make a copy of the skull, you can see here, and this is research-quality, you can take this under a CT scan and it will literally have all the folds and wrinkles and cracks of the original specimen. We'll take about four copies of each bone that we do. One scientific quality cast, another one for the home institutions, whatever country we got it from they'll get a copy of it, as well. Somebody will sit here and literally block out these pieces, put them back together and mold the whole thing all together and get this cast that you see here.