SPPC 1992 Bristol
- Authigenic minerals within vertebrate fossils from the Wealden, Isle of Wight. Jane Clarke.
- The conservation of the Sedgwick Museum Quaternary Hippopotamus skeleton. Caroline Buttler.
- Helping with the jigsaw! How preparators can help conservators. Chris Collins.
- Rubbers, resins and replicating Baryonyx. Lorraine Cornish.
A review of preparation techniques used in the Geology Conservation Lab at Bristol Museum. David Hill.
- Preparation, art or science? David Hill.
- Westlothiana: seeking evidence for the earliest amniote. William Lindsay.
- Preparation of the A303 ophthalmosaur. Richard Twitchett
Buttler, C. J.
The Barrington hippopotamus skeleton has been on display at the Sedgwick Museum in Cambridge for over 60 years. During a recent loan to the National Museum of Wales, the opportunity was taken to clean the specimen and carry out conservation work including consolidation, renewal of some mounting bolts and the crowning of a broken canine. Techniques and materials were chosen to minimise damage and maximise the possibility of future reversal.
The presence of authigenic minerals, deposited in the voids of vertebrate bones during diagenesis, can be used by preparators and conservators as indicators when deciding on the
treatment of an individual specimen. A pathway can be drawn for each specimen which traces the different diagenetic environments through which the bone has passed, and hence
indicate the present condition of the bone itself, whilst the presence of apatite crystals and some forms of pyrite in the voids indicates complete disintegration of the bone.
Clarke, J.B. 1994. Authigenic minerals in vertebrate fossils from the Wealden Group (Lower Cretaceous) of the Isle of Wight Geological Curator 6(1): 11-15.
The preparation of vertebrate specimens for display or sale often leads to the destruction of important taphonomic information. For example, a huge variety of organisms (from
nematode worms to fish) may utilise a rotting carcass and leave traces on the bones. These are rarely preserved at time of burial, and if present are seldom retained by preparators.
Bones covered in iron oxide are especially susceptible to loss of surface detail as the matrix is harder than the fossil. Application of the Waller Method allows full removal of the iron
oxide without losing any of the taphonomic information preserved beneath.
Twitchett, RJ. 1994. Preparation of a disarticulated Ophthalmosaurus skeleton to retain important taphonomic details. Geological Curator 6(1): 7-10.