Fossilised Mackerel Sharks Tooth otodus obliquus,
This large Fossilised Mackerel Sharks Tooth otodus obliquus measures 8cm long. The overall size of the composite matrix is 11cm x 9.6cm. A fossilised Mackerel Sharks tooth can be fragile so when mounted in the matrix they are protected. Additionally they are much easier to display, when they are in the matrix. These sharks existed approximately fifty to sixty million years ago during the Eocene period. The term ‘Mackerel Shark’ refers to the shape of these sharks, not their diet. They were streamlined and ‘fish’ shaped and lived in open seas. The actual name ‘otodus’ derives from the Greek ‘ear shaped’ tooth. These fed on large bony mammals, large fish and almost certainly other sharks.
These mackerel sharks are thought to have grown up to 9 metres long. Like other species of shark their bodies were composed of cartilage as opposed to bone. Very few skeletal structures have been discovered, generally only fossilised teeth are found. The Mackerel Shark was one of the principle and most ferocious predators of its time. Although smaller than the Megalodon Shark, the otodus was still much larger than todays Great White Shark. There is an ongoing debate as to whether these sharks evolved into the even larger Megalodon Sharks.