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Tooth on the beach

I found what I think is a horse tooth on Hendry's beach. Is it old?? It's probably hard to tell from the photos. It's about 2 1/2 inches long. I'm guessing it washed down down a creek this past winter. 

Any ideas about it's story?

Thank you!!


Robert, Santa Barbara - June 18, 2023

Curator Response

Hi Robert,

Thanks for sharing your find. I appreciate the hand and scale information, it's helpful for ID!

This tooth is the lower molar of a cow. The occlusal, or chewing, surface isn't shown, but it should have big u-shaped loops.

How old is it? It's modern or historical; the root canals aren't filled with matrix, the roots have broken off, and the edges are very worn. I suspect you're correct that it washed down this winter.

Stay curious,

Dibblee Curator of Earth Science Jonathan Hoffman, Ph.D.