Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Week 3: garbage, bone, garbage...HOUSE?!

Friday was another nice sunny dig day for team Rhinocer-Awesome (clever, no?) and overall the dig went well.

We continued excavating several of team Wah-Watusi's test pits (including the Watusi pit) and put down a few more. The biggest finds this week were a small monkey mandible, courtesy of "team formerly known as team loser" (they now prefer "team funky monkey"), an articulated toe with a shard of the hoof shell from the watusi pit, and last but not least, a house.

After bailing out the pits, which were full up with water, we got down to business. Team tiny proceeded to dig test pit M4 until they were almost literally neck deep in their hole and came across what seems to be glacially deposited sediment, which is good because once we hit undisturbed soil the likely-hood of finding our good friend the elephant in there is extremely slim. The watusi pit (M5) gave us the articulated toe, and upon that find the job was to expand the pit from about 1m x 0.5m to 2m x 2m and bring it down to the same level as the find, 0.6m. Because of the location of the watusi toe (next to the horn) we believe that if the remains are in fact still relatively together that the watusi is in a sort-of fetal position with it's front limbs up by it's face. To be noted as well is the substantial amount of the ominous red rope we keep finding around remains, which obviously points to some sort of connection, though our Parc Safari representatives deny this connection. Next pit was M9, that of team pterodactyl, who found a bone, which they claim is that of a pterodactyl, the verdict is still very out on that one. This pit did lead to some interesting smells deeper down, smells that were vaguely reminiscent of rotting rhino...maybe this is where Magic is hiding, but that will have to wait until next dig day.

We seem to find mostly garbage in the first pits, then higher concentration of bones, then more garbage, except for the anomalous monkey jaw find. Here is an artist's representation, being my own, on the equivalent of microsoft paint.

Above: g = garbage, b = bone & garbage, n = negative test pit

Thankfully the mapping of the site will be completed very soon, the total station has been acquired (however temperamental it may be) so we won't have to rely on my awesome microsoft paint jobs much longer!

As stated above you can see that the greatest concentration of finds are in the middle of the line of test pits, save for the monkey jaw, which was found in a pit on the far right. So the remains seem to interrupt what looks to be a continuous spread of garbage.

Now for the house. This was found by Prof. Costopoulos and Chris Ames while scoping out the area behind the line of test pits. It's very rectangular and there are remnants of wood floors. Now this house could possibly predate the use of the field as Parc Safari's cemetery but we will have to do a little Historical Archaeology to figure that one out, whose up for a trip to Hemmingford's public land archives?

Still no Magic. That clever, clever...dead elephant. Where is he hiding? Well, we don't know, and it could possibly be that our "informants" may be mistaken as well. Though there are 2 spots where he could be hiding , those being right next to the road by the first elephant station test pits (or not because hopefully reverse psychology works on dead elephants) or in the large area behind the house. Hopefully team Wah-Watusi will get lucky on Friday. That's it for today.

Cheers, Team Rhinocer-Awesome

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