Real Dinosaur Found Sealed in Stone

By: Jason Witt

When you receive the Seal you bear the imprint of history upon you. It was planned since before the dawn of history. Another piece of evidence from history is now being uncovered--a dinosaur "mummy."

It is not a real "mummy" kept the way bodies of pharaohs were preserved with spices. But it is wholly preserved as stone. The skin, muscle, ligaments, and joints have been preserved as well as the bones.

This is considered to be as close as scientists will ever get to studying a live dinosaur. Everything is preserved in stone so that scientists have been able to assess just about everything except the color of the skin.

This fossil has been found in North Dakota and is nicknamed Dakota after the state. It is a duckbilled hadrosaur, a prey dinosaur that was quick on its feet and without much other defense against predators.

The study of the dinosaur is still happening, so a complete study has not been published yet. To inspect the stone of the fossil, scientists are using the world's biggest CT scanner, normally used to scan things like spacecraft engines.

Though the skin color can not be told, the skin itself reveals a world of mystery. Very little else has even been uncovered of the skin of dinosaurs. The monochrome image of the skin shows there were stripes.

There are larger and smaller scales on the skin of the hadrosaur. And the striped pattern is similar to one in current-day reptiles that exhibit changes of color, like chameleons.

But sadly no DNA will be recovered from this fossil. DNA has been recovered from mammoths found frozen for long periods of time--what is thought to be as old as 1 million years. But no DNA can be taken from the stone.

The tissues of animals and people begin to decompose shortly after they are no longer alive. But chemicals where this hadrosaur died caused minerals to deposit in place of those tissues, so they have been "mineralized."

It is certain though that there are "organic molecular breakdown products" to be studied with the hadrosaur. The chemical analysis of the find is not yet complete and will unearth much treasure of knowledge.

Researchers have reformed many opinions about this dinosaur, as well as reconsidering opinions about others. They were able to estimate the muscle mass of the hadrosaur and found it to be more than they had previously thought.

Now they believe the hadrosaur could run at up to 28 miles per hour while a Tyrannosaurus Rex could only run at 18 miles per hour. And it makes sense. It was the only way a hadrosaur could stay alive, by running away.

Many museums are also seeing this research and wondering if they should change the way they display dinosaur skeletons. Until now they have displayed the bones of the spine close to one another.

But in the hadrosaur there is a space between the bones of the spine where there was something like cartilage which made the dinosaur more flexible. In the bigger dinosaurs these spaces could add a few feet to their length.

When you receive the Seal you receive the imprint of ancient history. God has preserved eternity in the mark He sets upon you. You become an artifact of the ages just like this fossilized dinosaur when you receive the Seal.

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