What a set of serrated teeth could tell us about ancient ecology
By Matt Soniak
External ImageForget the fin — take a look at that smile! (Bettmann/CORBIS)
“Show me your teeth,” the 19th-century zoologist Georges Cuvier once said, “and I will tell you who you are.” Across the animal kingdom, the shape of a creature’s teeth correlates with its diet and feeding behavior. As such, a simple change in tooth structure can reveal larger changes in the animal’s food web and ecosystem.
Scientists from the University of Toronto recently found just such a change, in the mouth of one of our distant cousins.