PORTSMOUTH, NH. (WTWO/WAWV) — While dredging for scallops in late December off the coast of Newburyport, a Portsmouth, New Hampshire-based crew called the New England Fishmongers, pulled up something unusual.
Captain Tim Rider took the 11-inch long, seven-pound artifact to the experts at the University of New Hampshire to determine what exactly it was. And that is when the man learned that the weird, heavy item, he had found was the tooth of a wooly mammoth.
“I always love thinking about the landscape in New England, with mammoths and mastodons walking around, and in terms of geological times that wasn’t that long ago!”UNH Geology Professor
Today the 12-thousand-year-old fossil is being kept at Captain Tim’s Kittery, a restaurant in Maine. Rider wasn’t sure what to do with the item until recently.
With the humanitarian crisis unfolding in Ukraine, Captain Tim decided to use the rare fossil for good. He’s posted it for auction on eBay, and says 100% of the proceeds will be donated.
“I can’t imagine what it is like for the folks over there, so we found a charity that works with food, and our chefs know the chefs that started that,” said Rider.
The money will go to World Central Kitchen, an organization serving hot meals in several Ukrainian cities and at border crossings to feed refugees fleeing the war.
“Obviously I can’t solve the world’s problems as a fisherman, but I can contribute to help the people that are suffering. If it makes several thousand dollars it’s good, it’s going to help someone”
The Wooly Mammoth hasn’t roamed the earth since the end of the last ice age, so Rider is hoping someone will pay up for the perfectly preserved piece of history.