Message Number: YG2574 | New FHL Archives Search
From: RRC
Date: 2001-04-15 12:17:00 UTC
Subject: Re: Bob C: Ageing Ferrets Addendum

Sorry, my joke was ruined by my word processor and I didn't notice until
too late. Instead of "sanguination", I should have had "exsanguination."
Somehow the "ex" was stripped off, making me look foolish. Not that I
can't do that well enough on my own. If you cut a zooarchaeologist, does
he not bleed?

One aspect I didn't mention was a short discussion on why it is so easy
to age humans compared to ferrets. The reason is actually related to
lifespan; when the lifespan is eighty years, an age determination having
a five year range is insignificant, but when you only live eight years,
that same five year range is more than half the lifespan and becomes
very significant. Consequently, it is extremely difficult to age animals
with short lifespans with any degree of accuracy. Assuming an eight year
lifespan for the average ferret, it is at about the point where precise
and accurate age determination is somewhere between "difficult" and "its
giving me a migraine," especially when using noninvasive techniques.

Over the next couple of days, I will post some photos showing cranial
suture remodeling, fusion, dental attrition, and bacular changes for the
FHL archive. I may even draw a diagram of the ferret's ageing curve if I
can find the time.

Bob C