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Separating Elk Vertebrae

Discussion in 'Skulls and Skeletons' started by Kelsey Swalwell, Mar 5, 2020.

  1. Kelsey Swalwell

    Kelsey Swalwell New Member

    Hey again, y'all, thanks for answering all my newcomer-questions. Here's another one!

    We've got two pretty stiff (one very old) elk spines, nearly intact. For my purposes, I need to separate each individual vertebrae, but they are seemingly fused together.

    What's my approach here? I would assume soaking first but do I soak in anything special? Should I hazard just delicately sawing through the connective tissue? Thank you for any help! IMG_7017.jpg IMG_7037.jpg
  2. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    Going to be a lot of tissue and tendon on there that has dried hard. Rather than damage the bone by cutting at it dry, soak it in water for several days .. maybe a little longer. Soaking is going to soften that tissue and make it easier to cut through. You should be able to separate them with a sharp knife then. If you work the bugs out of your hog skull project, throw all of them into the same container with the hog skull while it macerates. A good deal of the dried tissue on these will be eaten off as well.

  3. 13 point

    13 point Well-Known Member

    I would normally tell you to just soak in water , but I think you’d be better off boiling in a washing tub of water with 3 cups of washing soda in it