10
   

MANATEES and DUGONGS

 
 
Builder
 
  1  
Reply Thu 17 Nov, 2011 08:17 pm
For interests' sake, the bones of the Australian dugong are pure ivory.

I have a few rib bones collected from the beach.

Not sure what to make with them yet.

rosborne979
 
  1  
Reply Thu 17 Nov, 2011 11:06 pm
@Builder,
Builder wrote:
For interests' sake, the bones of the Australian dugong are pure ivory.
That's impossible.
Builder
 
  1  
Reply Thu 17 Nov, 2011 11:44 pm
@rosborne979,
Why is that impossible, rosborne979?

The rib bones are solid ivory right through, and weigh heaps even when sun-bleached. I have a few of them. I'll cut one and post a photograph.

Edit; http://marinebio.org/species.asp?id=161

Dugongs are hunted throughout their range for meat, which has been likened to veal. They are also hunted for oil, hides for leather, and for their bones and teeth, which are made into ivory artifacts and charcoal for sugar refining. Some Asian cultures prize dugong products for "medicinal" purposes.
Builder
 
  1  
Reply Fri 18 Nov, 2011 12:04 am
@Builder,
Hmmm, same article says that dugongs and manatees are more closely related to elephants than other mammals, so that explains the ivory, I guess.

I did wonder about that.
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 18 Nov, 2011 05:07 am
@Builder,
Bones have remnants of the blood vessels (called the Haversian systeM. They can be seen as little pores in cross sexction or streaks and pits on the surface. WHereas ivory shows up cross hatched and trnslucent .

Dugong males have ivory TEETH but not a akeleton. True ivory is deposited by accretion whereas bone is actually a growing tissue
Builder
 
  1  
Reply Fri 18 Nov, 2011 05:17 am
@farmerman,
Did you read that link, farmerman?

I have three rib bones from an adult dugong, and I cut several sections of rib bone for my German volunteer workers to fashion jewelry from. Certainly not like any bone I've cut before.

This is from the link above;

The bones of their skeleton are pachyostotic external (extremely thickened and dense).
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 18 Nov, 2011 05:25 am
@Builder,
but thyye are bone not true ivory. Many curiosities are carved in bone and sold as ivory. I saw some carved-bone animals at an antique shop once and you could see the Haversian system along the ends or in areas of deep cuts. The owner swore they were ivory and they werent. No animal has an ivory skeleton Ivory is a unique substance that forms tusks (Not horns) . Dugongs have ivory tusks only.
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 18 Nov, 2011 05:30 am
@Builder,
PS, I read the link and it said that bones and teeth are used to make ivory artifacts. I would have said "Ivory artifacts" cause only the teeth are true ivory.
Many arts and crafts carvers who make knife handles or carved effigies call their stuff "bone ivory" or they just try to pass it off as real.
Builder
 
  2  
Reply Fri 18 Nov, 2011 05:46 am
@farmerman,
Okay. I've not handled elephant ivory before, but I've cut up plenty of bones.

These dugong rib bones are dense, and solid right through. No marrow at all. Not brittle like cattle bones either. Same consistency right the way through.

I'll cut a section tomorrow and take some photos to show you. It's too late to get the grinder and saw happening.

Neighbours would freak out.
farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Fri 18 Nov, 2011 05:56 am
@Builder,
See, the diff between us and you is that we could send a guy through a wood chipper and nobody'd bat an eye.
Look in the cross section and youll see the little canals. The sternal section (if you still have it) is actually cartilege and the ribs are bone, so dont cut the sternum, itll look like hardened jello
0 Replies
 
Eorl
 
  2  
Reply Tue 22 Nov, 2011 04:13 pm
@farmerman,
My brother loves dugongs. He says they are delicious.

No, I'm not joking.
farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Tue 22 Nov, 2011 04:18 pm
@Eorl,
msolga catches hold of you, you will be singing soprano. KnowhatImean?
Linkat
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Nov, 2011 04:31 pm
@Eorl,
Aren't they protected? I know that manatees are...
farmerman
 
  2  
Reply Tue 22 Nov, 2011 05:00 pm
@Linkat,
Wikipedia stated that dugongs are allowed to be hunted for subsistence by aboriginal tribes from Australia to New Guinea. The biggest causes of their decline, however, is due to space competition and entanglement from gear and prop slices
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Nov, 2011 05:46 pm
@farmerman,
Yeah!

Wink

0 Replies
 
Eorl
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Nov, 2011 06:04 pm
@farmerman,
Yep, they've been a food source here for maybe as long as 60, 000 years, nobody knows how long. It would be a bit rich for Europeans to arrive 200 years ago, all but wipe them out, and then tell the locals they are not an appropriate food source.
I guess it all comes down to that previously discussed issue of which species are morally inedible.
0 Replies
 
jcboy
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Nov, 2011 06:12 pm
@farmerman,
I’ve been in Florida for just over two years now. The first winter was the coldest on record in over 30 years, I read we lost about a quarter of the manatee’s, they’re beautiful majestic animals. You can visit them not too far from where we live.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Nov, 2011 06:18 pm
@jcboy,
I recall weeke watchie springs as a kid. Is there such a place or was I fucked up in the head (again)
jcboy
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Nov, 2011 06:27 pm
@farmerman,
Well you might be lol, j/k Smile

It's still there! and you can still visit the Manatee's!
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Tue 22 Nov, 2011 06:40 pm
@jcboy,
what are these people doing in my room?
 

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