Friday, 1 March 2013

Fisherman Finds Mammoth Tooth In New Hampshire - via D R Shoop

A scallop fisherman in Rye New Hampshire pulled up an interesting artifact with his catch this week -- a possible mammoth tooth.

Capt. Mike Anderson said he recognized what appeared to be a very large tooth when he hauled in his catch on his boat, the Rimrack, while south of the Isles of Shoals.

"We pick through the scallop shells and throw a few rocks over and stuff, and we ended up finding that tooth," he said. "If you ever had a tooth extracted, you could see where the nerve ending came off. There was a hole in it."

According to paleontologist Will Clyde of the University of New Hampshire Earth Sciences Department, the fossilized tooth is not the first evidence that the wooly cousins of elephants were in this area, but the find is rare and unusual.

Clyde examined the object via Skype while he was working on a project in Argentina.

"And you can see on the surface that I'm looking at that it has these long crests," Clyde said. "They cut across the tooth, and that's very distinctive of mammoths."

He said that 10,000 years ago, just before mammoths became extinct, the sea level in the area was 180 feet lower than today, so an animal could likely walk to what's now the Isles of Shoals.

"It probably would've been partly forested, and they would've been grazing," Clyde said.

Anderson said he plans to show off his discovery to customers at the Rye Harbor dock.

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