9-year-old Japanese boy finds shark tooth from age of dinosaurs


Teeth of Cretaceous lamniform shark

From the Yomiuri Shimbun in Japan:

Boy finds shark tooth dating back 135 mil. years

A 9-year-old boy in Wakayama Prefecture has discovered a fossilized lamniformes shark tooth believed to be the oldest ever found in Japan, dating back as far as 135 million years, the Wakayama Prefectural Museum of Natural History said Wednesday.

The discovery was made by Yoshihisa Yamamoto, a fourth-grader at Kaseda Primary School in Katsuragicho.

The shark belongs to the lamniformes family, which includes the great white shark.

According to the museum, the fossil is 3 million to 10 million years older than the previous record holder.

One scientist said, “The discovery is an important glimpse into the origin and early habitat of the lamniformes.”

Yamamoto unearthed the fossil during an excavation event held by the museum along the Hirogawacho coastline on March 4.

Yamamoto found the fossil after using a hammer to break up about 50 rocks from the Cretaceous period (143 million B.C. to 65 million B.C.), the age of the dinosaurs.

The museum has since deduced from the shape of the tooth’s roots that it was that of a lamniformes.

The fossil will be exhibited at the museum from June 1.

(May. 18, 2007)

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2 thoughts on “9-year-old Japanese boy finds shark tooth from age of dinosaurs

  1. Monday, July 21, 2008

    Large dinosaur tooth unearthed in Japan

    McClatchy-Tribune News Service

    KANAZAWA, Japan — An amateur fossil hunter has unearthed what might be the largest fossil of a dinosaur tooth ever found in Japan.
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    Satoshi Utsunomiya, found the fossil in June on red rock in the lower Cretaceous strata of the earth in Hakusan, Japan.

    Experts believe the time-worn tusk belonged to a therapod, a group of carnivorous dinosaurs that include the Tyrannosaurus rex, which roamed the Earth 130 million years ago.

    Almost perfectly preserved, the tooth measures 3.2 inches in length and is 1.1 inches wide at its widest.

    According to the National Museum of Nature and Science, the largest tooth found previously in Japan is the 3-inch-long Mifuneryu, which was unearthed in Mifunemachi in 1979.

    One expert says the Hakusan tooth is “the largest specimen found in perfect condition in this country.”

    Nobuomi Matsuura, a former director of the Hakusan Dinosaurs Park Shiramine in Hakusan, and Masahiro Tanimoto, a special member of the Palaeontological Society of Japan, authenticated the tooth.

    They said they could not identify the species of dinosaur, but estimated it to be about nine meters in length — making it one of the largest found in Japan.

    The fossilized fang was found in the Tetori Group, the biggest area containing dinosaur fossils in Japan. The area spans the Hokuriku region and Gifu Prefecture.

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  2. Pingback: Saudi Arabian dinosaur discovery | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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