Christian Gio Bangalao, Jestoni Alagon, Fel Vincent Vargas and Geo Rodell Nacorda went on a hiking trip when they accidentally found an unusual fossil in a mountainous barangay in Maribojoc town.
It was part of their spiritual activity as members of the Singles for Christ.
Bangalao, 25, said that while they took respite in an uphill road in Barangay Jandig in Maribojoc, he tripped over something protruding from the earth.
“Pagduko nako naa koy nakit- an unusual. Murag shell pero lahi ra sa shell. Mao na-curious ko,” said Bangalao.
Using a stick, he dug the soil and he got half of the object since it broke. Later he got the half which was still intact.
Vargas, 23, said they had no idea what was it but they suspected it was a tooth of an animal. He took photos and posted it on Facebook. A friend, he said, told him to inquire with the reseacher at the National Museum of the Philippines- Bohol Area Museum and Satellite Office (NMPB).
Personnel from the NMPB headed by Charlemeine Tantingco, museum researcher, came to check the specimen and the area where they found it.
Days after their discovery, they were informed that the fossilized tooth belongs to the Megalodon (Otodus megalodon) previously known as Carcharocles megalodon, a huge shark that lived during the Miocene to Pliocene period, which lasted from around 15.9 to 2.6 million years ago.
Jestoni Alagon, 23, said that the discovery would give better understanding of the sharks of Maribojoc past and present, as they remain as an important part of the town’s unique natural heritage.
The quadrumvirate donated the fossil tooth to the National Museum-Bohol branch last May 28, 2020.
This isn’t the first time a megalodon has been found in Marobojoc town. In 2018,
Venjo Busalla found a fossil at Maribojoc’s town plaza.
It is currently on display at the National Museum of Natural History in Manila.
Coming across a megalodon fossil is considered a rare find, according to Professor Jose Marianito Luspo.
He said the discovery of the fossil would give better understanding of how the island of Bohol was formed— from part of the sea floor and became land.
“There was a time that sea creatures used to swim in the area. Because the rise of coral which later became limestone then became foundation of the island, the remains of these sharks and megalodons became part of the landscape, ” Luspo said.
The four didn’t expect that their spiritual activity on May 24, 2020 would led to a bigger discovery that will provide key insights into the influence of geological changes on the evolution of mammals.
They hope the fossil will eventually be available for exhibit.