Saturday, February 11, 2006

Scorpion Survives Fifteen Months Encased in Plaster with Dinosaur Fossil

Brian
The scorpion, which already has eight legs, two pincers, a stinging tail and a nasty disposition, can add another weapon to its repertoire—the ability to spend fifteen months locked in a plaster mold with a dinosaur fossil and without food or water:
Don DeBlieux, a paleontologist for the Utah Geological Survey, said he was sawing open the plaster mold when the scorpion wriggled from a crack in a sandstone block.

DeBlieux is still chipping away at the 1,000-pound rock to expose the horned skull of an 80-million-year-old plant eater—a species of dinosaur he says is new to science.

The scorpion "must have been hanging out in a crack the day we plastered him," DeBlieux said Thursday.

. . . .

Scorpions, which eat insects, are capable of surviving for months without feeding or moving in a sleep period known as diapause, said Richard Baumann, a Brigham Young University zoologist.
Link. The scientists were only speculating that the scorpion lacked food. In reality, the dinosaur was alive when he went in. Booyah! Don't tangle with arachnids, man.

Indexed by tags science, nature, scorpion, plaster, sleep, diapause, fossil.

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