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Unidentified Jaw, Mammal?


MarielleK

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Hello everyone. Ive got a tough one for you guys. So I have a fossil jaw with a single canine tooth that I’ve had in my collection for a couple years. It was a gift from my boyfriend, so no locality. I tried to have it identified on the fossil forum Facebook group when I first got it, but no one knew what it was for sure. I had a paleontologist post a response and this is what he had to say:

”Hi Marielle Krenzelak, I'm a palaeontologist but I'm not entirely sure what you have there. I'm not concerned with the material that others don't think is bone. It looks to me like the canine tooth (the only tooth you have) is broken.  I think the jaw is mammalian based on its overall morphology. I don't think that it is a horse, based on the shape of the symphysis (area where the left and right jaws would have connected) and its position relative to the canine.  It is interesting that it has a long post-canine diastema (the smooth area after the canine and before the alveoli, or holes, where the next teeth would have gone). I also think the other suggestions (boar and goat) are also incorrect, again based on the length of the diastema and the shape of the symphysis. Finally, the age constraint someone gave you of less than 20,000 years is not supportable.  I've worked on mammals back to ~ 55,000,000 years that have similar preservation.  Barring that, I'm just not sure what it is you have there.”

 

So I thought I’d try again on this forum to see if anyone has any idea what it might be? I know we have many experts and actual paleontologists on here. If anyone could help me out, it would be greatly appreciated. Here is a link to the post about it on Facebook in case anyone is in the fossil forum Facebook group and wants to take a look at it: https://www.facebook.com/groups/135008766530423/permalink/1768488489849101?sfns=mo

Thank you for any thoughts or insights you have to share! 

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Harry Pristis

 

It looks like a fragment of the jaw of a camelid.  Without locality info, we can't say which camelid it might be.  Here's a Florida lamine:

 

 

camelmandibularsymphysis.jpg

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a substantial (if broken) canine and the huge diastema suggest camel to me.  

 

edit: Looks like harry and I had the same thought at the same time.  

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29 minutes ago, Harry Pristis said:

 

It looks like a fragment of the jaw of a camelid.  Without locality info, we can't say which camelid it might be.  Here's a Florida lamine:

 

 

camelmandibularsymphysis.jpg

A camel? Interesting. The tooth seems to be a pretty close fit. But the only question I have with that, is if it were from the camel pictured wouldn’t there be an obvious break running along the jaw? I highlighted where I think the break would be on the picture. There is no break in my jaw and it is smooth and rounded along the bottom, suggesting it was not connected to any more bone there. This may just be that my jaw is from a different species of camelid?

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This (in black) is where the two jawbones joined in life, known as the mandibular symphesis.  Notice it is a very different texture than immediately to its left.  It is not an obvious break, but an obvious joint, where the left and right dentaries were joined.   Your red line should go right down the middle of the jaw and come out (on the left) between the two left-most incisors.  HOpe this helps. 

5ddece4126631_wsymphesis.jpg.ddbd43e804cafa4883b5f20b3aecb49b.jpg

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