Dentitions in Animals

Animals come in different sizes and with different animals come different diets. From elephants to wombats, these animals have different dentitions which suit their diet and the way they eat, but there are certain similarities in the makeup of these teeth of certain animals, they are the presence of enamel and dentine. It’s something that got me gunning my mind and I thought it was time to write something about it.

So today, I will be comparing certain animal dentitions and see how amazing they are.

Crocodiles And Sharks

Crocodiles and Sharks are one of the most amazing animals that play a huge part in maintaining their ecosystem. They are one of the most dangerous predators in the world. One of the most intriguing facts that make them such successful predators is their killer instincts and their deadly jaws. With strong bite forces on both of them respectively, many think that their teeth might be super strong but there’s a catch.

Picture Credit: Pinterest

In Crocodiles and their ancestors, despite having such immense power their teeth are meant for ripping through and tearing flesh not precisely chewing so they have less proportion of enamel and dentine, they replace their old teeth with new ones.

Picture Credit: Fossil.fandom

In sharks, however, they do replace their old teeth as they have multiple rows of teeth inside their jaws, and the presence of soft connecting tissues acts like a conveyor belt helping in that process. But there’s a similarity between human teeth and shark teeth, they have nearly equal proportions of enamel in their teeth the only difference is the sharpness of human teeth is quite significantly lower than sharks.

Whales and Seals

Leopard seals and toothed whales are another set of marine predators that dominate their waters, they both look quite charming and cute on the surface but once underwater these cute animals become deadly predators. They are part of the most fascinating megafauna found in antarctic and arctic waters.

Picture Credit: Researchgate

Leopard seals have amazing dentitions which look generally similar to other predators found on land like tigers and lions. They have robust teeth that help in catching prey like penguins and trident shaped cheek teeth that work together as a sieve to remove excess water while feeding on krill. They do have a good amount of enamel and dentine which keep their teeth intact.

Picture Credit: Researchgate

Beluga whales are excellent predators and mostly eat fish, especially salmon, halibut, and invertebrates like shrimp. Their dentition is mostly similar to other predatory cetaceans like orcas and dolphins, there’s a catch. Despite having a good dental structure and teeth, they suck their prey rather than chew their prey meaning they eat their prey whole.

Turtles And Frogs

Adequately here are two more interesting things on the dentition of turtles and frogs, well there are certainly a lot of things that might run on your mind viewing these two pictures, well I’ll get to them right away.

Picture Credit: allturtle

Turtles and tortoises don’t possess teeth while tortoises have a sharpened beak that they use to chew food and dense vegetation that they feed on.

Picture Credit:

Turtles especially sea turtles have an element of surprise, instead of teeth they possess oesophageal papillae which help in keeping hold of their prey while they remove excess seawater. Although they look kinda grim they are made from keratin the same substance that our nails and hair are made out of.

Picture Credit: kids.nationalgeographic

Frogs on the other hand only have their upper jaw except for Guenther’s marsupial frog which possesses true upper and lower jaw. Frogs' teeth are designed to grip their prey rather than chew it down.

Picture Credit:

Frogs possess two types of teeth- vomerine and maxillary. These two types of teeth are similar in shape and size with vomerine teeth located at the roof of the teeth and maxillary teeth found around the corner of the teeth making their teeth homodont.

These are some of the animals that have some unique dentitions and which is something less talked about. Nature has a lot in store and has priceless treasures which have been overlooked for a long time, but times are changing and together we can save these treasures that mother nature has kept for us without which we would be incomplete.

If you love learning about animals and their evolution, this is the page for you. I write such articles and you guys reading them encourages me to write more amazing articles, feel free to share with your fellow animal enthusiasts and people.

If you want to connect feel free to follow my Instagram at @beardedtarzaan

Stay safe and nature forever 🌱



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Abhidyu Ajila

A zoology student who talks animals, conservation, evolution and geography