SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) _ The Postal Service extended bare bones service to Kerrie Shannon, delivering a wrapper-less fossilized leg bone mailed to her by a sister in New Mexico.

The foot-long artifact took about a week to arrive, with Ms. Shannon's home address neatly printed on the bone with a marking pen and a $2.40 postage meter stamp affixed.

''We only have a mail slot, so when my father came home, he found it sticking halfway out,'' Ms. Shannon said.

''Greetings from New Mexico,'' read the message from Colleen Shannon, a park employee at Bandelier National Monument in New Mexico.

Two weeks earlier, Kerrie Shannon had complained her sister hadn't answered any of her six letters. ''I told her to send me something, and she did,'' she said.

Joe Sniadecki, a South Bend postal superintendent, said he's heard of coconuts mailed from Hawaii, but never bones from New Mexico.

''It doesn't happen every day, but there's nothing wrong with it as far as regulations,'' he said.