Today’s Belize Photo of the Day is the Teeth of the American Mastodon whose scientific name is Mammut americanum. The American Mastodon first appeared during the early Miocene period and persisted in the fossil record until the end of the Pleistocene era and were widespread throughout North and Central America.
This particular specimen was found along the banks of the Mopan River near the small village of Bullet Tree Falls in the Cayo District and today it is exhibited at Chaa Creek’s Natural History Centre.
The teeth of this extinct creature appear to belong to a middle-aged American Mastodon and is characterized by rounded and pointed enamel-covered cones that wore down with every use and flattened out considerably over time.
This proboscidean finding is just one form of evidence of Paleo-Indian occupation in Belize where scientists believed that the Paleo- Indians may have followed herds of large animals such as mastodons, mammoths, horses, and camelids as they crossed the Bering Strait from Siberia to Alaska during the Ice Age.
Submitted by Naturalist Guide: David Juarez