Thursday, September 17, 2009

The whole tooth and nothing but the tooth!

Now, that is a nice find.

I wonder if they would've been good barbecued?

I mean this being Texas and all that.

Spelunker finds mammoth tooth in cave


A Spring Branch man has attracted the interest of paleontologists after finding a mammoth tooth in a cave.

B.T. Price, a professional spelunker, made the discovery as he was exploring a newly discovered passageway in Snookies Cave at Specht Crossing Ranch on Sept. 12.

“At first I thought it was a rock and was going to move it out of my way and I picked it up and started looking at it and I said, ‘This isn’t a rock,” Price said. “It took about two minutes of standing there just staring at it before I realized what I had.”

What he had is a Columbian mammoth tooth, a species of mammoth that disappeared from the planet around 12,000 years ago, said Dr. E. L. Lundelius, Jr., a paleontologist with the University of Texas.

“There’s no doubt it is a fragment of a mammoth tooth,” he said, after viewing pictures of the find.

The tooth has a rough, flat bottom and a ridged root that is characteristic of mammoth teeth, Lundelius said.

Price said he had been told a team of graduate students would be coming from UT to look for more mammoth artifacts. Lundelius said he was not sure if he would be able to accompany them.

Mammoth teeth are commonly found throughout Texas, Lundelius said.

“They are very durable objects,” he said.