A mysterious skull which appears to be void of eye sockets has washed up on a beach in Lincolnshire sparking debate as to what kind of creature inhabited this skull.
The skull was discovered at the Gibraltar Point National Nature Reserve, was found by a woman who was walking her dog and picking up litter, according to the Lincolnshire Echo.
When she stumbled upon this skull she simply “couldn’t believe her eyes”.
“I think it’s definitely a washed up seal skull that’s been bashed about by the tide,” the woman, who wants to remain anonymous, said.
“The top part of the jaw is missing and the bottom jaw is out of place by the looks of it.”
She posted pictures of the gnarly remains online, with several people trying to work out what it was. Take a look at it below and share your input.
a London veterinarian shared that the skull could be the remains of a dog, such as a French bulldog or a pug, which have flat faces and short snouts. Its possible, but the jawline seems different.
The picture of the creature appears to have canines, indicating it is a carnivorous animal. The strange component here is the lack of any real eye sockets, which led to the suggestion it could have been a malformed puppy.
The plot thickened even further as the vet said the reddening of the skull could be due to haemorrhage which could suggest evidence of a head trauma. She also noted the reddening of the skull can also happen after de̳a̳t̳h̳ if the body is left lying on one side so the blood pools on that side.
However, the mystery settled quite a bit as they found out what it was.
The mystery animal skull from the sea is none other than a common seal.
A Natural History Museum spokesperson shared: “According to our principal curator of mammals, Richard Sabin, it is a seal skull and it is missing the front part of the skull which holds the upper dentition.
Somehow, the front part of the skull is missing. Possible, but likely? Skulls are solid calcified bone. Maybe there’s more to the story that’s being hidden.
“According to Richard, it’s tricky to identify species from the single photograph online, but the shape of the check teeth appears consistent with the common seal.
Experts at UCL’s Grant museum concurred. Zoology curator Tannis Davidson said: “I’ve taken a look at this and its looks like a seal skull: Phoca vitulina.
“The front of the cranium is broken so only the posterior part of the orbit is visible with lack of post-orbital processes suggesting that it is a seal rather than a dog.”
She added: “The alignment of the teeth in the mandible are typical of Phoca vitulina as well as the dental morphology.”
The woman who found the skull told The Independent: “I was litterpicking and just walking my dog on the beach. I do a lot of regular litterpicks.
“I suspected it was a seal skull and it does appear to be one.”
She added: “It’s quite common for bones and strange things to wash up on our coast just not every day you find a seal skull but loads do get washed up.”
Seal skull found on a beach. Mystery solved, or is it?
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