Carcharodon carcharias Great White Shark Tooth

from the Atacama Desert of Chile

Carcharodon carcharias shark tooth

Class Chondrichthyes, Subclass Elasmobranchii, Superorder Selachimorpha, Order Lamniformes, Family Otodontidae

Geological Time: Pliocene (~3 million years ago)

Size (25.4 mm = 1 inch): Maximum with root: 69 mm by 50 mm
55 mm diagonal measurement; 46 mm across at base rear root

Fossil Site: Huarra Formation, Atacama Desert, Chile

Code: KZC07

Price: Sold

Carcharocles carcharias shark toothDescription: The Great White has existed for ~ 5 million years. The modern-day version is thought to be threatened over parts of its range, and thus is a protected species in many areas. Some scientists think its closest relative is the Megalodon which they term Carcharodon megalodon. Others think they branched off earlier, and call the Megalodon Carcharocles megalodon. Those feel the great White is descended from the Mako Shark, genus Isurus. Recently (2012) a transitional species between the Great White and the Mako known as Carcharodon hubbelli, a taxon some 6.5 million years old, has been described which lends credence to the descent from Isurus. This fine specimen displays the characteristic serrations (Carcharodon means sharpened tooth in Greek). Coming from the Atacama Desert in Chile, it was found on a rainless plateau that parallels the coastline for some 600 miles. The desolate landscape is so moon-like that it has been considered as a test location for a new generation of Lunar Rover. Given the rule of an inch of tooth for 10 feet of shark, this one came from a nearly 20 foot example. As of 2006, Chile no longer allows the exportation of material such as this. This specimen comes from a collection amassed 2002-2003 so it is not an issue.

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