Virtual museum of Canada
Collections from Storage: A Visit to our Hidden Treasures

This fossilized tooth is a Mammoth molar, perfectly adapted to grazing grass. The Mammoth only had four molars, but each weighed up to 2 kg. When one was too worn, a new one formed behind, then gradually migrated to the front to replace it. Over its lifetime, the Mammoth could produce six series of teeth. When the last was broken, the animal was no longer able to graze, and it died of starvation. To determine the species and age of the animal, paleontologists observe the size of the fossil teeth and the number of ridges of enamel.

This molar comes from the Musée du Séminaire de Nicolet, which acquired it in 1887 from Louis-Honoré Fréchette. He was a Quebec poet, dramatist and writer, and was also well known on the federal political scene. He won the Académie française's prize for his collection of poems entitled Les Fleurs boréales.

Mammoth Tooth - A very large brown tooth with several ridges of enamel.

Credits : Musée de la nature et des sciences, Sherbrooke

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