In June, I wrote about searching a deserted farm where I found a sheep's body that had got stuck in a fence. Because it wasn't rotted down I left it for a bit. But every time we've checked it's still the same !
Normally when a body rots the bones fall apart. This sheep's body is still all stuck together by the bits of flesh that held the bones together.
The picture on the left is what it looked like in June, and the picture on the right is what it looks like now.
Because it wasn't rotting by itself, I decided to move it to the grass where there might be more bugs to eat the flesh. I put on rubber gloves, then I realised I had to cut the head off to move it.
First of all I cut the jaws off. All the incisors were still there and there was flesh at the front of the jaws holding them together.
Then I used a penknife to cut between the skull and the atlas, which is the first bone on the spine. It's tricky because the atlas wraps round the bottom of the skull. Inside the spine there was still flesh from the spinal column.
This is what the head looked like when I cut it off. There was still skin on the top of the skull and the skull looked all dirty.
After the head was cut off, I could pick up the whole body all in one go, including the pelvis and the back legs. This is the weirdest skeleton I have ever seen !
I moved the skull and the body and the front legs round onto the grass where hopefully it will rot a bit better and there are more bugs.
The saddest thing was this sheep had at least one baby in her tummy. It's really quite sad. In the picture from June you can see one lamb body behind the sheep. When I searched where the sheep had been we found some lamb bones, like a rib, this shoulder blade and a leg bone, but I didn't find a skull.
I hope the bugs will get to work so I can have a really great skeleton.
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