Information about: Zeuglodon

Index | Zeuglodon

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Zeuglodon. (Yoke tooth). A fossil whale-like Cetacean found in the strata of the Eocene series. The living animal was probably 70 or more feet long and shaped somewhat like the whale of the present day. It differed from all existing whales in having two kinds of teeth, the incisors being conical, and the back teeth or molars having serrated triangular crowns and being inserted in the jaw by two roots. In appearance the tooth suggests two teeth united by their crowns. This peculiarity has given rise to the generic name (Gr. Zeugle, a yoke; and odous, a tooth). The fossil remains of this whale occur in great numbers in the "Jackson Beds" of southern United States. According to Dana, some of the larger vertebrae were a foot and a half long and a foot in diameter. In Alabama they were formerly so abundant as to have been built up into stone walls or burned to rid the fields of them.