Giant skull from 40-ton creature is discovered on North Carolina beach… do YOU know


A large, eerie skull fragment — with two rows of jagged, teeth-like edges — washed onto the shoreline of North Carolina‘s Outer Banks this week.

Representatives with the US National Park Service (NPS), which maintains this Atlantic coastal region, reported that the skull fragment was approximately 3-feet wide and 2-feet tall, as it warned citizens against trying to remove the giant skull.

The skull fragment appeared on Hatteras Island, the namesake of the Cape Hatteras National Seashore, south of Salvo village, a beach community surrounded by the ocean-side national park.

NPS officials said that the fragment was part of a sea creature’s ‘cranial cavity,’ and that the animal can grow up to 60-feet long and weigh as much as 40 tons.

The seemingly, razor-like teeth on the eerie humpback whale skull was likely a severed region connecting the skull to another part of the body, as humpback whales are filter-feeders who use a structure called baleen instead of teeth to hoover-up plankton and algae for their meals

The seemingly, razor-like teeth on the eerie humpback whale skull was likely a severed region connecting the skull to another part of the body, as humpback whales are filter-feeders who use a structure called baleen instead of teeth to hoover-up plankton and algae for their meals

‘Take a look at this large portion of a humpback whale skull,’ the park wrote in its May 15th Facebook post on Wednesday. 

‘Humpback whales (Megaptera novaeangliae) have specialized skull structures to support their unique feeding behaviors,’ the park service officials noted. 

The seemingly, razor-like teeth on the skull were much more likely a severed region that had connected the skull to another part of the body — as humpback whales are filter-feeders who use a protein-structure called baleen, instead of teeth, to hoover-up plankton and algae for their meals. 

‘Their skulls are relatively flexible, especially around the jaw joints, which enables them to open their mouths wide to consume large volumes of water and prey,’ Cape Hatteras park officials said. 

‘They also have mandibles (lower jaws) that are not fused to their skulls,’ according to park officials, offering a clue as to how the skull became separated from the whale’s lower jaws.

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Fisheries statistics, no less than 30 humpback whales have died along the North Carolina coast since 2016.

NPS officials attributed this phenomena to the region’s history with hurricanes and shipwrecks, suggesting that North Carolina’s outer islands and its undersea geography can sometimes trap large sea mammals.

‘Given its location on the Outer Banks, the barrier island chains extend into the Atlantic Ocean and come in very close proximity to the continental shelf,’ they said, ‘and for this reason a large number of strandings occur within park boundaries.’

But other humpback whales, according to NOAA experts, have died locally due to ship collisions, as well as fatal encounters that ensnared them in fishing gear.

Park officials tried to warn-off civilians from attempting to grab the impressive skull fragment as a personal trophy.

‘Under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, it is illegal to possess any parts of a marine mammal carcass and/or bones,’ they said. 

‘When NPS finds them, if we can use it for education/research we will (which requires several staff to lift!),’ they continued, ‘or they will be removed and disposed of or buried back in the environment.’

Park officials encouraged the public to report any sightings of marine mammal strandings or sea turtle activity sightings to the Cape Hatteras Stranding Hotline: 252-216-6892.



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