A giant fossil dating back 7.5 million years has been found during ongoing excavations near the Yamula Dam in the central Turkish province of Kayseri, according to Turkish media reports.
The fossil is believed to belong to an extinct species believed to be the ancestor of the elephant and called “Choerolophodon,” according to Professor Okşan Başoğlu, a faculty member in the archeology department of Hacı Bayram University.
Parts of the fossil were first discovered in September 2018 by a shepherd who was tending goats near the dam. After the shepherd reported the situation to the authorities, excavations began in the area, which resulted in the discovery of the giant fossil, which has a height of 2 meters, 70 centimeters. The fossil is one of the largest of the Choerolophodon species discovered in different parts of the world so far.
According to Başoğlu, excavations in the area could last as long as 30 years and will be joined by scientists from Germany and Finland.
“It appears this region will be home to more surprises. The fossil will be taken out of the area by using the plastering method and taken to a science center,” she added.