Most of the remains the duo have found have been contemporary, Demeter told the Sentinel: He and Sadler have turned up scallop shells. shark teeth and even stingray spines.
Growing up to 13 feet tall and weighing more than 10 tons, the Columbian mammoth was one of the largest mammoth species. Experts are unsure if overhunting, climate change or some combination of the two led to their extinction some 10,000 years ago
‘When you uncover this fossil and realize there were these giant, elephant-like creatures roaming around what was probably once a grassland in Florida, it gives you a sense of wonder for what it was like back in ancient times,’ he said. ‘It’s kind of like our way of time traveling. It makes your imagination go wild.’
The Peace River is a popular destination for fossil hunters, who have reported finding megalodon teeth and bones from giant armadillos and sloths in its waters.
The same day they found the mammoth leg, Sadler also unearthed part of an extinct shark and a tooth belonging to a saber-tooth tiger.
The Peace River is a popular destination for fossil hunters: The same day they found the mammoth leg, Sadler also unearthed the top third of a saber-tooth tiger’s fang
‘There’s only the top third of it, so it’s missing quite a bit,’ Sadler wrote on Instagram. ‘It’s a once-in-a-lifetime find, as is the mammoth leg bone. Derek and I seem to be pretty lucky together.’
Sadler, a middle-school teacher, previously found other mammoth bones in the river, including vertebrae and part of a jaw.
He donated those specimens to the Florida Museum of Natural History, but he’s using the leg bone as a teaching aid.
‘It’s currently sitting in the classroom where the kids are able to see it, touch it, feel it and really get a history of the natural world,’ Sadler said. ‘They’ve heard about saber-toothed tigers and actually finding a piece of one of those animals and bringing it to life for those kids; it’s just awesome.’