A team of scientists attached to the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) in California made a fascinating discovery in the deep waters of the Pacific: they found the tusk of an extinct mammoth.
The surprising and implausible find has its origins in a 2019 expedition, when marine biologist Steven Haddock and a submarine pilot explored a deep-sea mountain about 300 kilometers off the coast of California. They both saw what looked like the tusk of an elephant, so interested in the object, they collected just a portion.
Two years later they returned to the site of the find, where they found that, surprisingly, the 1 meter long tusk was still there. “Finding this mammoth tusk, so deep and far from shore, is the most unlikely thing I have ever experienced”, said to Gizmodo the marine biologist who found the tusk.
But before you get to all kinds of incredible theories – we think of a megalodon feast – experts say that the mammoth has likely been washed to the bottom of the ocean by some flood or tsunami. However, what is truly incredible is that the tusk has remained there for at least 1.5 million years, which is the age of the species to which the tusk is believed to belong: a Columbian mammoth (Mammuthus columbi).
About its amazing state of preservation, experts say it is due to the cold and high pressure environment. After all, the tusk was found 3,070 meters deep.
After the discovery, the scientists will carry out all kinds of genetic tests to determine data about the mammoth such as its history, age and lineage. There is even talk of sequencing your DNA.