Shark Tooth Capital of the World
Venice Florida Real Estate
Venice Florida Motels, Hotels & Vacation Rentals
Collecting prehistoric sharks
teeth has been a favorite pastime
of visitors and residents of the
Venice area for years. They may
be black, brown, or gray,
depending on the minerals in the
soil in which they have been
buried. They range in size from
one eighth inch to three inches,
and on rare occasions more.
Sharks of all species continually shed their teeth and grow new
ones. They have 40 or more teeth in each jaw. Behind the
functional rows or teeth are seven other rows of teeth
developing into mature dentures to replace teeth as they are
shed or lost. In ten years,an average Tiger shark can produce as
many as 24,000 teeth.
Besides sharks teeth, fossils of other marine creatures are also
found in this area. Because millions of years ago most of Florida
was under water, many fossils are found inland as well as on the
beaches. State law prohibits digging without a permit however.
Identification of sharks teeth, which come in many different
shapes and sizes, is relatively easy. All of the teeth in the mouth
of a single type of shark are the same shape. They vary only | in
size. The shape of the teeth of each species is distinct. Local
book stores offer many books on the subject.
For millions of years, sharks have lived and died in the Gulf of
Mexico. Dead sharks sink to the ocean floor where they are
covered by layers of sand and silt. Over time, the cartilage of
their bodies disintegrates. Water and storm action eventually
sweeps the sand away, exposing the teeth. Some are washed
up on shore with the changing tides and waves.
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