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Bear tooth question

Discussion in 'Skulls and Skeletons' started by DEERMEISTER, Sep 29, 2012.

  1. Hey you skull guys/gals! Does anyone know at what age a black bears canines become solid?? I know the younger bears have hollow canines (as well as other critters) but don't know when they go solid, I'm guessing maybe around 3 years old but that's just a guess. Thanks for any help!
     
  2. Well, I guess everyone is like me and don't really know.
     

  3. No, I don't really know, but I would think older than 3 years. I'll guess around 5. Maybe someone can tell us more.
     
  4. AH7

    AH7 New Member

    1,281
    2
    Great question! I feel like I should know that! I know what I would do to find out: call the DNR/F&G/F&W people and see if you can track down one of their biologists. Those guys know stuff like that. Seems like a big part of their job is to assess age of things that are hunted/hit/etc. Post the answer when you find it!

    P.S. What you are really asking is when the root tip is closed. All teeth are "hollow" - that space is where the nerve and blood vessels are. Teeth grow starting at the crown and then as the root elongates, it literally pushes its way through the gums. Likewise, the roots of the baby teeth start to dissolve so at one point you have the adult crown pushing into the space of the dissolving baby tooth. Once that baby root is flimsy enough, the tooth falls out, then the adult tooth is poking up underneath it. Once the tooth reaches full size and position, the root closes around the pulp chamber.
     
  5. As animals age, teeth roots gain a layer of what is called annulus, about each year you gain a new layer of annuli. Teeth always remain hollow, but roots do become harder and more "formed" to say with age. In bears the first annuli is formed after 2 years of age. You can even age animals by counting the levels of annuli in the roots.
    You can read further about this on these websites
    http://www.ishib.org/journal/17-4s5/ethn-17-04s5-45.pdf
    http://ww2.dnr.state.mi.us/publications/pdfs/HuntingWildlifeHabitat/Reports/WLD-library/2700-2799/2739.pdf
    Hope this answers your question :)
     
  6. Thanks for the reply wolfgirl
     
  7. Np :) I'm a big biology nut lol