Raffle: Win a cast shark tooth pendant and support the education programme!

Mark Stotesbury made and generously donated to the Trust five cast teeth from South Africa that were left by sub-adult shark in a decoy during research work that was being conducted by Chris Fallows (Apex Predators) and Rob Lawrence (African Shark Eco Charters).

Mark cast this tooth in a spin caster mould in zinc and plated with nickel, brass, gunmetal, antique nickel and antique copper.

No sharks were harmed in gaining this unique pendant opportunity, so we are more than happy to offer you the chance to win one!

Mark Stotesbury’s cast teeth in antique copper, nickel, brass, and gunmetal (clockwise from left)

To enter the draw to win a tooth, simply pick a raffle number between 1 and 100.   There is a limit of 5 numbers per member, and each number you choose costs $5.00.  Email/send us your chosen numbers and the entry fund (you can send us a Paypal receipt, or snail mail is fine – no cash though!), and we will log your choice.  We will announce the winners in the next newsletter.The funds from this raffle will be going towards the education programme fundraiser. We are currently raising funds to help schools send classes to Kelly Tarltons to engage in a one day educational visit.  The schools we are raising funds for do not have the financial resources to be able to send their pupils on such educational visits.  We would like to help children benefit from what we believe to be an extremely worth while and highly beneficial day out.  We hope you will feel as we do that finances should not restrict the learning potential of our kids and help us to reach our goal of $7,500 over the next year.

Mark informed us Chris and Rob work closely on research and often use a seal decoy made from carpet cut in the shape (and similar length and width dimensions) of the seals common to False Bay from where they operate.  The work they were doing during the last season saw them towing the carpet seal decoy around Seal Island upon which sharks would launch breach attacks.  Apparently this particular top jaw tooth was the smallest they were left with, the others being far too large and bulky to make a sensible sized pendant cast from!

As strong as the teeth are, they are only anchored to the jaw by soft tissue.  This ingenious evolutionary feature ensures damaged teeth are readily shed.  That said, physical damage is not the primary reason the sharks loose their teeth.  White sharks, as with all shark species, are in a continual state of tooth renewal.  It is not known exactly how often the cycle occurs, but tooth shedding in other shark species has been accurately documented and ranges from 9 to 21 days per row in warm water to 51 to 70 days per row in colder winter temperatures (Rate of Tooth Replacement in the Grey Nurse Shark; Luer, Blum and Gilbert, 1990).  This ensures they always have a full, healthy set of teeth for catching prey.

The image below shows what a tooth row actually looks like. Shark teeth are arranged in lines. The lines can be described as “rows” that are parallel to the line of the jaw, or as “series” which are perpendicular to the line of the jaw. In taxonomy, shark teeth are counted as follows: rows of teeth are counted along the line of the jaw, while series of teeth are counted from the front of the jaw inward. A single tooth row includes one or more functional teeth at the front of the jaw, and multiple replacement teeth behind this.

Megalodon lower jaw with 4 tooth rows and 4 tooth series labeled. "Series 1" contains the functional teeth at the front of the jaw

Megalodon lower jaw with 4 tooth rows and 4 tooth series labeled. “Series 1” contains the functional teeth at the front of the jaw

Show your support for white sharks and our youth by choosing your numbers from the table below.  The lucky winners will be wearing one of these unique pendants.

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