The gang discusses two papers that look at the wealth of information left behind on fossil bones which can let us know about the many organisms which worked to break down and decay dead animals. These feeding traces give clues to the presence of animals that might not easily fossilize. Plus, this topic is an excuse for James to suggest two papers that involve dead dinosaurs. Meanwhile, Curt starts a business, Amanda goes prepper, and James wonders about the taphonomy of Shrek.
Up-Goer Five (Curt Edition):
Our friends talk about things that eat the dead. These two papers look at marks on the hard parts of dead angry animals that are caused by other animals eating the dead bodies. The first paper looks at lots of different marks from many different small animals. These marks let us know that these animals were living there, even when we don't have good bodies of those animals. We can learn a lot about the different types of animals from these marks. The second paper looks at marks that they think were made by small warm animals with hair.
McHugh, Julia B., et al. "Decomposition of dinosaurian remains inferred by invertebrate traces on vertebrate bone reveal new insights into Late Jurassic ecology, decay, and climate in western Colorado." PeerJ 8 (2020): e9510.
Augustin, Felix J., et al. "The smallest eating the largest: the oldest mammalian feeding traces on dinosaur bone from the Late Jurassic of the Junggar Basin (northwestern China)." The Science of Nature 107.4 (2020): 1-5.