October 6, 2013

"I unexpectedly found the creatures washed up along the shoreline of the lake. No-one knows for certain exactly how they die..."

"... but it appears that the extremely high soda and salt content of the lake causes the creatures to calcify, perfectly preserved, as they dry."

12 comments:

EDH said...

Lot's wife was unavailable for comment.

Bob said...

The substance involved,natron has the same name - - and may be the same compound - - used by the ancient Egyptians in mummification.

Unknown said...

Just to keep everything on the up and up, here's an article that lends a little balance. The chemicals in the lake are a result of run-off from a volcano. http://www.geekosystem.com/natron-birds/

David said...

Chalk like the Egyptians.

Revenant said...

The photos look faked to me. A bird dies gripping a branch and maintains the grip long enough to calcify? Fishy.

St. George said...

Mummy may have be tried as a remedy to ward off encroaching blindness by poet John Milton in the mid 1600s, according to the book "Shakespeare's Tremors..." by Dr. John Best which recounts famous writers' medical miseries.

Surprisingly, most medicinal mummy came not from Egypt but from the flesh of recently executed criminals that had been dried with aloe and myrrh.

Other popular cures of the day included usnea, the moss from the skull of a man who died violently (such as by hanging), cat-ointment, oil of spiders, foxes' lungs (for asthma), lead, and that favorite, oil of puppies boiled with earthworms.

elkh1 said...

Revenant said...
The photos look faked to me.

"the creatures washed up along the shoreline of the lake... perfectly preserved, as they dry."

I believe he meant they were found dead and wet on the shore, and were posed "as they dry."

David said...

Revenant, perhaps the photos are posed but perhaps the specimens are real? Is that fake?

Cargosquid said...

The artist states that they took the stiff animals and posed them on the branches.

El Pollo Raylan said...

Presented as art, I have no problem with this. Presented National Geographic-style as the next biggest environmental calamity, it is disingenuous.

BTW, we can blame Sir Humphrey Davy for people's ignorance of the word "natron".

Alex said...

I think what happened is the birds died on impact with the lake surface and the Africans posed the birds later.

Levi Starks said...

Clearly its a process that took millions of years.