Monday, October 08, 2007

Nomadic Expedition Gobi Trip Photos 2

Some of the canyons of the Nemegt Basin.

While one crew worked on the Oviraptor nest in the torrential rain the rest of stayed dry (after we'd retrieved all the blown away tents) and prepped and packed fossils.

Reopening the 2006 small theropod bone bed.

In the western sayr of the Nemegt Basin we came upon an odd sight – a stacked series of stones. It took us a while to figure out that it was a platform used by poachers to get at the fossils exposed under a ledge. Miriam points to the fossils that must have been too difficult for them get out.

A marker from one of the early Russian expeditions.

Dr. Julia Sankey collects a theropod tooth. Isolated teeth are rare in the Nemegt Fm.

One of the nicer turtles that we collected.

Susan Owen Kagan(lt) with Dr. Badamgarov.

Part of pelvis left behind by poachers who smashed and destroyed a beautiful skeleton just to collect the teeth and claws (just one of the dozens of poached quarries in the Nemegt Basin).

Julia and Nick Longrich work on one of the lizards they collected.

Dr. Eva Koppelhus and Victoria Arbour help pack up camp.

One my goals on this expedition was to collect the remains of a Tarbosaurus from a poached quarry. Although the specimen was smashed, and the skull, hands and feet were missing, much of the rest of the skeleton was there including an articulated series of dorsal vertebrate that were still in situ. Alas, this is what we found - an empty vodka bottle (one of many) in the hole left by the poachers who must have returned and re-poached their own quarry!