As of February 2016, after 416 posts, and over six and a half years of blogging, I'm taking a break.
I've explained why here. There's plenty of past posts to read, though - hope you enjoy them !
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Archived posts: The following articles are from the month or year requested:

My favourite bits of 2012, and thank you !


It's New Years Eve and I've now been bone collecting for six years - crickey ! - and writing this blog for 3 and a half years. It has been fun but tough at times, and I'm looking forward to the twelve months.

There is some really interesting and amazing stuff I have been working on but I can't tell you about you just yet, but here are the best bits from 2012....

My ten most popular posts of 2012


It's coming to the end of 2012 so I thought I would do a post on the most popular posts I have written this year. I was very surprised by the results ! Some of my favourites are in there but there are other ones (like exploring the deserted castle or my post on seeing white tailed sea eagles on Skye) which I thought would be in the top ten.

Actually all my posts were popular this year with about 75,000 visitors and comments on every single post apart from one (this one). Anyway here in reverse are the ten most popular posts I wrote this year....

Happy Christmas to everyone !


Happy Christmas to everyone ! I am spending it at home and at grandmas in Scotland. I hope you have a good Christmas and get all the things you ask for.

We don't have snow here at the moment but this robin was in the woods a few weeks ago when we did have snow.

My bone project for the Christmas break is....

Did I get it wrong about the injuries to Pharoah ?


For the last few weeks I have been writing about a fox skeleton I found in Northern Ireland which had some unusual pathology (which means features) on the bones. My first post was about cleaning them up, my second post was looking at the whole skeleton, and the third post was about some damage to the shoulder blade which I thought was a bite mark, and that I thought the suspect was another fox (who I put in jail at the end of the last post !)

After I wrote these, Ben Garrod of Ben's Bones sent me a message on my Facebook fan page saying that he he disagreed with me and he had different ideas about what happened. This happens a lot in science and good scientists always show how they came up with theories or ideas so other scientists can agree or disagree with them. So this last post on Pharoah is about what he what he thinks and what I think so you can make up your own mind in the comments at the end:

So which suspect is guilty of biting Pharoah ?


This is the third and last post almost the last post (see my note at the end) that I am writing about Pharoah the fox skeleton that I originally found in Northern Ireland in 2009. Two weeks ago I wrote about rotting the mummified body down to get the skeleton, and last week I wrote about what I found when I examined the bones.

Pharoah had a tough life. Last week I wrote about how I thought he had damage to one leg, arthritis in one knee,  he had lost a lot of upper teeth through some kind of damage (vets call it trauma) and one of the most interesting things was damage to the left shoulderblade which I think I have worked out was an old bite mark that had rehealed.

I will never now for sure if I'm right, but I thought it might be interesting to see if I can work out what animal had bit Pharoah the fox, causing the bite mark. So this week's post is about me doing a kind of scientific experiment to work out which suspect was to blame !

The six things I learned from Pharoah's post-mortem


Last week I wrote about how I rotted down the mummified body of Pharoah (I name my skeletons in alphabetical order) which was a canid that I brought back from Northern Ireland. It took me ages to rot down but when I did I discovered something interesting: it was not a dog which I had thought for two years, but a fox !

How did I know it was a fox and not a dog ? Foxes and dogs are both from the canid family, and they are the only two types of canids you find in the wild in the UK. In other places you can find other canids like wolves, coyotes and jackals. Here are the signs I looked for to tell a fox and dog apart:

The bones that took two-and-a-half years to clean


Out of all the bones I have had, this one has been the longest to write about ! Above are the bones a week or so ago (and an atlas bone from a seal as well !) but it took two-and-a-half years to get them like this. These bones are so interesting that I have written three posts about what I did and what I found.

When I was in Northern Ireland in April 2010 Granddad said he had found something. He asked if I was interested in some dog bones. I said definitely yes, so we went in the car together and then walked into a deserted field. He showed me where it was. It was underneath a hay bale, and I thought it would just be bones, but it was mummified which is not the prettiest thing to see. That's why the next picture you need to click on it and hold down to see it properly, and don't do it while you're eating your dinner !

Free counters!