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Carcharocles-bitten odontocete caudal vertebrae from the Coastal Eastern United States

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A description and analysis is given of three Neogene odontocete caudal vertebrae that were bitten by the extinct megatooth sharks Carcharocles megalodon or Carcharocles chubutensis. The peduncular caudal vertebrae show bilateral gouge marks consistent with having been actively bitten and wedged between adjacent teeth of C. megalodon or C. chubutensis. None of the vertebrae show signs of healing. The occurrence of bite marks on distal caudals suggests active predation (vs. scavenging) in order to immobilize even relatively small prey prior to consumption.
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  • Department of Paleontology, Calvert Marine Museum, PO Box 97, Solomons, Maryland, 20688, USA
  • National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC, 20560, USA
  • 2234 Birch Road, Port Republic, Maryland, USA
  • 11539 Tomahawk Trail, Lusby, Maryland, USA
  • 3403 Willow St., Chesapeake Beach, Maryland, USA
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