From the toothed cetacean Squalodon sp. resembling a long snouted dolphin, this fossil tooth with full crown and nearly complete root is a fantastic specimen to augment a whale fossil collection. Found at the famous Sharktooth Hill deposits in central California, it features naturally lustrous enamel in pumpkin orange, blue and cream hues on the well-preserved crown.
Prosqualodon was related to and looked like modern toothed whales. It was about 7.5 ft (2.3 meters) long and resembled a dolphin. It had long jaws with interlocking teeth that jutted to the outside, remaining visible when the jaws were closed, like those of a gharial. In the back of the mouth it had triangular teeth similar to those of earlier cetaceans, but in most other respects, it was relatively advanced.
Prosqualodon had developed the body form of modern whales, with a short neck and simple jaw structure, and like modern cetaceans, it also had a blowhole. The olfactory apparatus was reduced compared with earlier forms, suggesting that it had already lost much of its sense of smell, presumably relying on sound to catch its prey.
The rich Miocene fossil deposit known as "Sharktooth Hill" located in Bakersfield (Kern County), California has a reputation as the finest and most diverse fossil deposit of Miocene sharks, rays, bony fishes, turtles, birds and mammals (both marine and terrestrial) of the entire Pacific realm of North America. The formation is a result of silt spilling out of a prehistoric river delta into a Middle Miocene sea that once covered central California over 12 million years ago. This river originated in the nearby mountains east of Bakersfield. The fossil-bearing layer is thin ranging an average of only 6" - 18" thick but it spans approximately 100 square miles!