It's not odd to find mammal bones when you live in the heart of farm-country Iowa. But, for Brandon Bradshaw of Hinton, Iowa, the prehistoric mammal tooth found on his northwest Iowa property is anything but ordinary.
Bradshaw found the tooth of an 11,000-year-old Ice Age mastodon in the sand along the Floyd Channel, a small waterway that serves as the backdrop for Bradshaw's business, Pipe Dream Camping & Tubing.
Geologist Thomas Marshall from the University of South Dakota in Vermillion, South Dakota, confirmed the authenticity of Bradshaw's find.
So, did the tooth travel down the river to Bradshaw's property, or did this particular mastodon once roam the his rural Iowa land? Although Bradshaw will never know the answer, he plans to keep the 6- to 8-inch long mammal tooth in the family.
Now the business owner just needs to decide if he'll add an extra feature to his Iowa recreation spot: digging for fossils. According to the Smithsonian, mastodons did roam North America, and fossils from the 10-ton creatures have been found in nearby South Dakota.