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Anyone got pictures of the underside of an alligator skeleton?

Discussion in 'Skulls and Skeletons' started by VacantEyes, Dec 11, 2012.

  1. VacantEyes

    VacantEyes New Member

    I've been trawling through pages and pages of photos on Google but in every picture it's obscured or the picture itself is too small. I basically need a clearly labelled diagram of what is cartilagenous and what is bone regarding the ribs of an American alligator.

    Some of the mounted skeletons I've seen have just got thoracic ribs which are obviously bone, like this picture here:

    Other skeletons have got the complete gastralia, like this one:

    And others have got thoracic ribs and then the 7/8? (can't remember off hand) pairs of "ribs" that are on the ventral side of the alligator and more caudal... just in front of the pubis, like this one:

    Now I KNOW the last one was macerated, and I'm guessing the one with the complete gastralia was beetle cleaned... but I will be macerating, so what can I expect to lose exactly? Should I end up with exactly what is present in the last skeleton, and nothing under the chest? If so, how come the first mount ONLY has the thoracic vertebrae? I'm currently removing the flesh from the rib cage, but if I'll be losing cartilage anyway, where can I safely just cut it off?

    This has been bugging me for a few days now, and I just want to get it neatly bagged into sections so I can proceed!
  2. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    I would assume that the first one was boiled.

  3. Vkvz

    Vkvz New Member

    If you macerate it, you'll basically end up with what you seen in the first picture, or in the third one minus the gastralia. Unless I'm mistaken , the gastralia, as well as the sternal ribs, are all cartilage, but maybe some parts can ossify over time.
    Now, you can maybe save the gastralia by "scraping" it clean, but it'll be a lot of work and I'm not sure about the finished result. But I don't think you can keep the sternal ribs, so you would have to recreate them using wire and/or putty for example.