This is almost a bowl. It was made from a maple "habitat tree" that fell across the trail and exploded into pieces. A habitat tree is just that. It is normal on a prescribed selective cut for loggers to leave the dead standing trees in the area. These dead trees are used by a variety of animals for shelter, nesting and even a food source. They usually don't have any branches left because they are the first to rot off so hence they don't shade out the good trees or have any ill affects on a healthy forest . They can stand for many decades as they slowly rot. During this time insects lay eggs, wood borers and carpenter ants invade which in turn provides food for woodpeckers and rodents. They in turn make holes into the typical hollow cavity which provides nesting sites for many animals. This bowl came from the bottom of the hollow created by carpenter ants which is why it is missing a side. It has a small live edge on the outside that is riddled with patches of spalt which causes the funny outlined patterns and colors. It is how the white fungus spreads in a tree and the lines form where they meet. Spalt can occur in hard structural wood but as it consumes the tree the wood becomes real light, soft and spongy. This bowl is real light, soft and spongy on one side of the rim. It is borderline fragile. The other side is fairly hard in comparison. It sports a variety of borer tracks and ant holes along with many checks or splits. It has been thoroughly sealed with three brush coats of oil based polyurethane and waxed afterwards. Some of the more decayed areas are still dull because they soak up the polyurethane like a sponge. Be careful lifting it from the decayed side of the rim, anywhere else is fine. The bowl measures 10-3/4" in diameter, 3-3/4" high and the inside is 2-3/4" deep.
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