Fossilized Shark Tooth and Whale Skull?! - Purisima Formation - Capitola, CaliforniasteemCreated with Sketch.

in science •  last year

I found this baby shark tooth in the cliff face.

This exposure is part of the 7 million year old Purisima Formation that bears countless shell and bone fragments. The shells are highly compacted scattered with darker cetacean bones.

This is a vertebrate from an ancient cetacean aka a whale (I don't think he'll be doing any upvoting anytime soon. ;)

Shark's Tooth

Almost more exciting than the shark's tooth was this skull fragment from a cetacean!!. The two lung shapes are from the occipital condyle at the base of the skull. It was quite heavy to lug back to the car but well worth the effort!

A view of the formation at sunset!

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Wow you're good to know that. I would've thought it was "just another rock"and dismiss it..

What are you gonna do with those?


The shark tooth is displayed with some other fossils, while the skull sits on the bottom shelf of a bookshelf... It's so heavy and large that it doesn't really fit anywhere else!

Hey, you're back! Well, maybe you never really left and I haven't been paying attention?

It's crazy that you can actually identify that skill part by name. Is that a hint of yours?


It wasn't an spontaneous assessment. I grabbed it on a hunch. Looking at photos of other whale skulls helped me identify the other bones peeking out from the matrix as other parts of a skull. The condyles were the give away though. ;) Despite millions of years of evolution they all pretty much look the same!

This is so cool...
Did you have any other pictures of this one?

Call post! You have a good eye for those things. Thanks for sharing because it teaches me a lot about some of the cliff areas in Southern California. Lots of locations that remind me of your cliff wall picture. I've seen purisima formations before. I always thought they were man made (lazy cement created from dredging) Thanks for enhancing my appreciation.

This is amazing!

Compliments for your documentary..I love the final shot, poetic sunset light.
Do you have minerals too there in California? I do love them (I think Benitoite is a unique mineral you can find there).

Hello there. You may want to reply to my question regarding your ongoing flagging. I would be very interested to hear your thoughts on this before I make the situation public.

Please note that flagging this comment will not help your cause.

I am simply trying to understand what is going on here.