Happy News – Prehistoric Turtle Goes to Hospital for CT Scan
This is so cool!
What follows is directly from the Happy News article.
I’m lazy today, about blogging anyway, because it’s my day to clean and get ready for another week of work.
Montana State University
APRIL 17, 2009
Michael Knell carried a 75-million-year-old turtle into Bozeman Deaconess hospital recently, then laid it carefully on the bed that slides into the CT scanner.
Hardly an ordinary patient, the turtle fossil was only the second in the world found with eggs inside it, said Knell, a Montana State University graduate student in earth sciences. His turtle (from the genus Adocus) came from the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument in Kanab, Utah. The previously described turtle, which was found in Alberta, is also an Adocus and lived about the same time. Knell wanted his fossil scanned to see if he could find a skull and more eggs and learn whether or not the eggs contained embryos.
“It allows us to peer inside without digging into it,” Knell said. “It gives us a hands-off look without having to break anything.”
“It’s very cool,” added Frankie Jackson, an MSU paleontologist who specializes in eggs.
The CT machine looks like a giant doughnut with a narrow bed attached. Patients normally lay on the bed, then ride through the scanner while it takes images of a particular area. In this case, Knell wanted to scan the entire turtle. Although the edges of its shell were missing, the fossil measured about one foot across and weighed 40 to 50 pounds.