Elephas sp.

Fossilized molar

The triangular shaped specimen is a fossilized molar of an Elephas. It is an elephant belonging to Family Elephantidae. The fossilized molar has 13 lamellae forming a complete molar, measuring 24.3 cm. x 6.53 cm. x 13.71 cm. x 2.67 cm. and weighs about 1.8 kilograms.

This fossil is believed to be of Middle Pleistocene age or approximately 750,000 years old. It was collected by Dr. L. Jocano in 1965 on a gravelly slope in Sitio Bitoguan, Brgy. Jelicuon, Cabatuan, Iloilo. The Pleistocene rock where it was recovered consists of sandstone and conglomerate interbeds. Geologist called this Cabatuan Formation after the name of the town where these sediments are beautifully exposed.

The discovery of elephant fossils in the country is very important because it indicates that land bridge once existed between the Philippines and its neighboring country. These land bridges provided an avenue to which this large animal reached the Philippines.

This page was last modified Monday, February 10, 2014
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