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I Can Haz Teeth Earrings

Recently I picked up a pair of earrings from a lovely artist in Portland. I'm not sure what kind of teeth these are, and figured someone out here in G+ land might know what kind of animal these came from?
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63 comments
 
Not shark, they are flat & serrated on the edges
 
Hopefully not from an endangered animal.
 
those are from a dingo...a dingo that ate babies. 
 
Not whale shark or boar. 

It appears that they were put together in two pieces, is that accurate?
 
Definitely not shark; shark teeth have no roots. Looks like some type of cetacean; whale or porpoise. They're relatively small, so possibly juvenile. 
 
Alligator is a possibility
 
I think there is a Crocodile with fewer teeth out there?
 
+Aryaan KK None of my friends, like this artist, slaughter animals for the sake of slaughtering. Actually, if my friends kill an animal, they eat it and use every part of it. I think it's important to consider both sides of a potential situation before making accusations.
 
+Aryaan KK, I find skulls in the wild all the time.  Why do you assume that an animal was killed to get those teeth?  Also, where do you think the meat in your grocery store comes from?
 
+Marc Moberg I don't know about 2 parts, I just know that she added the silver so she could use them for her art.
 
I don't think this animal was killed to be eaten, +Natalie Villalobos , and the comment about buying animal artifacts always applies in some way to contributing to their demise unless a very strict protocol is followed (access to naturally dying sources, etc)
 
If I am correct, they look like grinding teeth (deer, cow, etc.) that were made to a point using a paste or epoxy.  
 
Depends on the species, +Marc Moberg Meat in the grocery store comes from cultivated livestock -- quite a different proposition.  I have not seen a cow, lamb, goat, or pig with teeth like these !
 
+Jeff Braswell Like I said.  I personally find skulls (cow, coyote, big cat, aligator, etc.) in the wilderness all the time.  These look like they are one of a kind, maybe the artist found a single skull.
 
These are not grinding teeth, the point looks natural -- not what you would typically find in a range skull, I don't think. Those teeth are incisors, and they are relatively big.  So far, alligator/crocodile looks the closest (based on google image searches)
 
Look closer.  the middle for the white portion of the tooth has a seam, and the bottom looks like a different shade than the top.  I am sticking by my guess.
 
I'd guess they are bear teeth.
 
The texture is even different on the bottom vs. the top.
 
These are very beautiful BTW.  I would have picked them up in a heartbeat.  Kinda makes me want to go skull hunting.  
 
Ah, that could be the root of the tooth, not the tip
 
I'd just call them scary teeth!
 
+Marc Moberg My friends and I are the same way with bones - we love finding animal artifacts when we go travelling. I don't think people realize that finding things like this in the wild feels like such a gift, and we honor it and the power of that animal through ritual, adornment, or on alter spaces. 
 
Thanks, +Marc Moberg. The boundary line ya'll are talking about is the edge of the enamel. The smooth part of the enamel stops at the gumline.
 
Indeed.  Imagine how much force those teeth have to carry when an alligator/croc is in a death spin or something like that. Amazing strength.
 
+Casey Hancock Yea, looks pretty croc/alligator, which is neat because I met a cool alligator while I was in Portland but wasn't able to hold him.
Ali H
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Without seeing the full tooth it's difficult to make a determination. These could be incisors or they could be premolars; based loosely on size they could be canine? Those are very easily found ^_^

As a Portlander, I'm going to side with "found art" on this one - there isn't a lot of "kill em for their teeth" people out here! The fact that there are such things as deciduous teeth also lends credibility to the idea that no animals were killed to make this setup. Just sayin.
 
I hear ya, +Ali H . Unlikely that an animal was killed, but highly likely that an animal died :)  (As economists are wont to say, in the long run, we're all dead).
 
I would draw a very different conclusion and say that.. they are probably fake. 

Almost all things that look like ivory in the US are not made from animal parts as there are to many import/export rules to stop the spread of illegal bones / animal parts. Thus I would have them checked for authenticity. 

" THE TEST: 
The tried and true method to test ivory is the famous "hot pin test".  This method is used by beginners and experts alike. Because true ivory is virtually impenetrable with heat, this is a good test and will 
not damage the item if it is "real".   Take a pin, large needle, or better yet a large straightened out 
safety pin, and heat the tip RED-HOT.  Poke the item somewhere that it will not show too bad (I 
use the netsuke hole).  If it is real ivory, it will NOT penetrate and only leave a tiny tiny mark.   If it is a resin, it will enter the item and produce a little crater around the hole.  Now the big test… smell the "smoke" that comes of the test as you are poking it.  If it is real ivory, it will have that unmistakable 
smell of the dentist's office when you had that root canal (stomach turning). It smells like burning 
tooth (because it IS).  If it smells like burning plastic, it IS.  Now, bone is also resistant to heat, but 
not as much as ivory.  The smell is less (or hardly at all) and is different than that of burning tooth. 
Most bone carvings are "capped" on the top and bottom as all bones are hollow.   If an item is 
carved thinly enough to be carved from the wall of the bone (usually not thicker than 3/4") it may 
appear to be ivory.  But, bone is absolutely free of grain and will ALWAYS have little "pock marks" (sometimes brown and sometimes not) in it where the marrow or blood was. You may have to use a loupe to see these pock marks.  So in conclusion, if it resists heat, smells like crap, and has any grain (especially crosshatching), you have the real deal.  Do a little experimenting with items you know are 
fake and real and see the difference.  After you get used to the difference, you can start telling the 
difference with most pieces by style of carving.  Rest assured that anything I promote as ivory 
IS ivory.   If you want more info on hippo, mammoth, or walrus, let me know..... "  -- http://www.asian-arts.net/oriental-treats/fake.htm 
 
+David Farrell - Don't think they are Okra teeth... most of the Okra I have eaten are smaller than that and don't bite back.

Orca teeth, on the other hand, are about the size of a hand, from online pictures.
 
wow those are HUGE teeth!
 
Wow, what a list. I was there when she bought them from my friends shop. They are from the Oregon coast more than likely out if the hands of a gem and mineral merchant. I find animals all the time and have quite a collection at home. For those who want to solve the mystery, they are hollow. Love you +Natalie
 
If the artist is a friend, you can ask her about the teeth? Whose where how?
 
She does not know but I do have the staff of the Seattle Zoo looking into it.  Seriously ;)
 
I'm going to guess "Sylvilagus montypythoni" - "That's no ordinary rabbit!"
 
The roots of toothed whales' teeth are absurdly large compared to other animals. This includes orca, pilot whales, porpoises, and the like. Considering this was purchased in the Pacific Northwest, I reiterate my proposal that they are likely orca teeth.

Orca have teeth that look like this: http://images.worthpoint.com/files/cowans/images/p2668.jpg

Crocodiles have teeth that look like this:
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_NnPCnoTDhhY/S62D8Bjbk2I/AAAAAAAAC5Y/-QkNg3zDaIo/s1600/IMG_2403.jpg

They are actually much smaller than the orca teeth. 

The teeth are sharp and pointed; perfect for piercing and holding, but not at all useful for tearing, grinding, or slicing. This would rule out rodents, ungulates, carnivores, sharks, and many other classes of animals.

Cetaceans also have mostly uniform dentition: there is very little differentiation between incisors, premolars, or molars. All of their teeth are fairly sharp points, well adapted for piercing and holding fish or other prey. Again, this leads me to say these belonged to some type of cetacean.
 
The orca teeth are much thicker in appearance than these are.  They are thin and light.
 
What if somebody tells you that they are made in Africa or China with human bones!!
 
+Randheer singh I will repent and throw them in the ocean! I don't think these are made from human bones, these are clearly animal.
 
+Aryaan KK I totally agree - I don't use, support the use of, or condone the transport of endangered animal products.
 
yeah of course they are of animal bones. But a animal was killed for it.
 
Not necessarily with intent.  As previously stated a lot of people collect bones from found animals.  I have personally cleaned at least 100 victims of roadkill and find bones all the time when hiking or at the beach.  These are two teeth from some small hole on the Oregon Coast more than likely from a hippie.  They are not human either.  I have had human bones in and out of my collection (medical/educational specimens).  I like to think of these earrings as, "awesome, these are really neat and unique.  Glad that this part of the animal is being used and appreciated."  How many of you wear feather earrings?  Chances are this animal died a better death than where those earrings came from....
 
Bones? Years ago in the university library I had a medical student come to report he'd lost a bag of bones. What sort of bones I asked (thinking dog food??) A human arm, he replied.
 
+Diana Studer And likewise, I don't know where it came from, it might be endangered, and I'm unsure if it was humanly killed/found/etc. But the thing is, whatever happened, I respect the fact that I have animal parts. I don't think that speculation of what/when/if/how helps here - it's more about understanding the animal so I can honor it.
 
Or the folks at the Seattle Zoo think some animal pig related if not alligator.
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