A fossilized shark head dating back some 300 million years ago has been discovered in the walls of a Kentucky cave.
Though the cave is currently a long way from the ocean, scientists believe when the sharks lived 330 million years ago during the Late Mississippian geologic time period, most of North America was covered by oceans.
The shark fossils were initially discovered by Mammoth Cave scientists Rick Olson and Rick Toomey, while they were mapping a remote part of the cave, CNN reported. They sent the photos of their discovery to paleontologist John-Paul Hodnett, who is an expert on Paleozoic sharks.
Hodnett was able to identify shark teeth, and what he felt at that time was shark’s skeleton from the photographs that Olson and Toomey sent him. When he visited the cave in November, he realized that it was not the skeleton that he saw in the photograph, but actually just parts of the head of the shark.
Hodnett determined that the fossil belonged to a species called Saivodus striatus after analyzing the teeth. The Saivodus striatus would be equal to the size of a modern great white shark — about 16 to 20 feet long, Hodnett told CNN.