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Paleontologist Unearths 450,000-Year-Old Mammoth Tusk In Remarkable Find

Veteran fossil hunter discovers intact tusk in Cambs quarry, offering insight into prehistoric era
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A veteran paleontologist – or fossil hunter – is celebrating a mammoth discovery after finding a four-foot-long tusk in a quarry.

Jamie Jordan, 33, uncovered the 450,000-year-old tusk on Tuesday, July 11.

The massive tusk belonged to a steppe mammoth during the last ice age.

The incredible find has now been taken to Jamie’s Fossil’s Galore center in March, Cambs, for preservation and so that research work to be carried out.

Jamie, who found his first fossil when he was 4-years-old, said: “I was on a routine visit to a local quarry when I saw it.

“I could not believe my eyes. It was sticking out like a sore thumb.

“I’ve never found a mammoth tusk before.

“They normally get broken up when they are quarried – but this one was in one piece.

“It was just on top of the ground – it was very heavy to pick up.”

It’s believed, when it was alive, the mammoth would have lived in herds.

The tusk belonged to a mammoth during the last Ice Age. PHOTO BY JAMIE JORDAN/SWNS 

It would have avoided predators including cave lions, cave hyenas and bears, and lived alongside hippos around Peterborough.

However, the tusk will now be examined for further information about its life.

The mammoth itself would have looked like a much bigger version of a modern-day elephant – up to 13 foot tall, and weighing 14 tonnes.

After recovering it from the quarry floor, the tusk was carefully wrapped to take back to March – but the Fossils Galore team had to ensure it stayed wet, to prevent it from becoming damaged.

Jamie said: “If it dries out, it is game over really.

“We will be spending the next few months working to preserve the tusk – it can take up to six months to do that.

“We will then be able to examine it to find out more about the animal’s life.

“You can learn a lot about the animal by looking at the rings of the tusk – like looking at a tree trunk.

“If the rings are tight, then it shows the habitat was not good, and the food supply was poor. But if the rings are thick, then it shows it had a good habitat.

“We will also look for signs of predation – whether from early humans or other animals.”

Along with the mammoth tusk, the team at Fossils Galore are also working on analyzing a skeleton of an Iguanodon, a dinosaur that lived more than 100 million years ago.

The skeleton was found in Surrey in 2017, and the team have been working on it ever since.

Over the summer, the March Centre will be running a range of activities for families, allowing youngsters to get involved and become the paleontologists of the future.

Fossils Galore is also fundraising in a bid to find new, bigger premises to allow them to expand the work they can do, and create a world class facility.

Produced in association with SWNS Talker

Edited by and

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