Shark Jaw Found in Kentucky Mine

It's from a shark comparable to a great white, experts say
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 12, 2011 12:06 PM CDT
A shark jaw, but not the one found in a Kentucky mine.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – A large 300-million-year-old shark jawbone was discovered in February in a place you might not expect: a Kentucky mine. Jay Wright was 700 feet underground, adding supports to a roof in the Dotiki Mine, when a rock fell and he saw "a bunch of teeth" above him. He pulled the jawbone from the roof of the mine and uncovered two more pieces nearby, ABC News reports. For a month, the fossil sat in his office, before a colleague sent pictures to the University of Kentucky's geological survey.

Experts say the jaw is being compared to that of a great white shark, and probably spanned 30 inches. The largest portion uncovered is 18 inches long, with teeth 2 inches wide at the base and 2 inches to 2.5 inches high. The shark it belonged to is from the Edestus genus, says the associate director of the geological survey, and probably weighed a couple tons. Currently, the jawbone is on display at the university, but in a month, Wright will get it back—and for now, he plans to display it at his family's drugstore. (Read more sharks stories.)

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