Greek researchers discover 4-metre mastodon tusks in 'fossilised zoo'

Jun 21, 2005

ATHENS, June 21, 2005 (AFP) - Greek geologists have discovered a three million year old 'fossilised zoo' containing the remains of prehistoric rhinos, mastodons, gazelles and carnivorous mammals near the northwestern town of Grevena, a Greek daily reported on Tuesday.

The finds included the 4.39-metre (14.4 feet), mostly intact tusks of a mastodon, a species that predated modern elephants, which may well be the longest ever unearthed, a senior researcher from Aristotelio University in Thessaloniki told Ta Nea daily.

"All the evidence we examined suggests that these tusks are the longest found in Europe," assistant geology professor Evangelia Tsoukala said.

"We have contacted the Guinness Book of Records, and are expecting an answer by the end of summer. We are confident that the Grevena mastodon will occupy the place is deserves in the book of records," she said.

The Greek team also sought to compare their mastodon find with discoveries made on the American continent. The largest fossilised tusks ever discovered there are probably 3.9 metres (12.8 feet) long, Ta Nea said.

The Grevena mastodon was 4.5 metres tall and weighed at least 12 tonnes, the university said.

(c) 2005 AFP

Explore further: Mapping the world's linguistic diversity—scientists discover links between your genes and the language you speak

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Lady, you're on the money

Jul 03, 2015

So far, women whose portraits appear on U.S. money have been a party of three. Excluding commemorative currency, only Sacagawea, Susan B. Anthony and Helen Keller appear on coins in general circulation, according ...

Old World monkey had tiny, complex brain

Jul 03, 2015

The brain hidden inside the oldest known Old World monkey skull has been visualized for the first time. The creature's tiny but remarkably wrinkled brain supports the idea that brain complexity can evolve ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.