Turkish farmer unearths fossilized jawbone of 8-million-year-old mammoth

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Photo by April Pethybridge (Unsplash)

A farmer in Yozgat province has found a fossilized jawbone that is thought to belong to an 8-million-year-old mammoth.

Hasan Şenyurt, director of the Yozgat Museum, told reporters they took the fossil under examination after the farmer gave it to them.

Stating that for the first time a mammoth or elephant fossil had been found in the city, he added: “It is known that Yozgat is rich in fossil beds; however, a study of fossils has just been launched in the last three years.”

He said Assistant Professor Cem Erkman of Ahi Evran University was carrying out studies on invertebrate fossils in the city, which he calls “a new development” for Yozgat.

“Up until now, no skeleton of an ancient elephant or mammoth has been found [in Yozgat],” Şenyurt said, adding that the jawbone found by the farmer was now completely petrified.

“We will have the opportunity to have this jawbone examined by professors at Ankara University and Ahi Evran University,” he added.

Şenyurt also expressed hope for the continuation of studies of ancient animal fossils and said these findings had the potential to attract more museum visitors.

“We will improve studies on the jawbone found in Şefaatli,” he said.

Alper Düşünceli, the farmer who found the fossil while cultivating his fields, said he handed it over to the museum director as he thought it looked like a tooth.

In 2016, a 2.5-million-year-old mammoth jawbone was found in the Ereğli district of central Konya province.

In 2014, the fossil of a mammoth was declared to be 2 million years old. It was recovered in 2010 in a lignite mine in the Ladik district of the Black Sea province of Samsun.

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