This is a rare fossil of a partially articulated Phocid seal pinniped skeleton in original host sandstone, from the Miocene Period seal from South America. Pinniped fossils are rare except for the occasional isolated fragmentary find. Articulated remains like this are highly uncommon. Fossils of the giant Megalodon shark and other Miocene sharks like Great White and Isurus hastalis are found in the same region as where this seal fossil came from and were likely predators that fed on these seals as modern sharks hunt them today. Various cetacean (whale) fossils both toothed and baleen, are also found in this region. A seal like this would have likely spent a great deal of its time evading these higher predators. This would make a perfect and highly unique compliment to any fossil shark teeth as well as fossil whale teeth.
The matrix of this specimen has been cleaned and removed from around each of the bones. There are several ribs, articulated vertebrae and phalange elements. The position of all fossil bones is original and no fabrication was performed, just repair. From a German private collection formed in the 1980's. Impossible to find or collect today due to highly restrictive South American fossil export prohibitions! This is a highly recommended piece and rare based on the absence of any similar articulated pinniped fossils on the market.