SARANAC, Mich. (WOOD) - A golf course groundskeeper stumbled onto something unexpectedon the job Tuesday: A tooth from a 10,000-year-old mammoth.
Recent high school graduate Patrick Walker found the 10-poundtooth when he was at Morrison Lake Country Club in Saranac.
He said he knew the tooth exposed by recent rains was from anextinct elephant because he paid attention in his scienceclasses.
Research assistant Scott Beld from the University of Michigan'sMuseum of Paleontology visited Morrison Lake Country Club andconfirmed Walker's find was a mammoth tooth.
The discovery has brought up many questions for club owner DixieRiley.
"If there was one, was there two? What was this before it was agolf course?" she asked.
But before Riley realized what Walker had found, the discoverywas just a disruption to a busy afternoon on the course.
"Patrick, if it is moving or woolly or whatever, it has to goout, it cannot be in here," Riley recalls saying.
Where Walker found the tooth is being kept top secret.
"For right now, for security purposes, for respect for the golfcourse and the golfers here, we're just kind of keeping it lowkeyed," Riley said.
The main reason for the secrecy? Beld said there are more teethand mammoth parts out there.
The discovery has ideas churning at Morrison Lake CountryClub.
"This will become prehistoric village," Riley said. "We're gonnahave to market T-shirts, our golf ball logo will now have a mammothon it, (the) menu will now have mammoth burgers."
But for now, said Riley: "It's a blessing all the way around foreverybody to have."
The owners of Morrison Lake Country Club say they are willing toshow the tooth to schools in the area. But the Ionia CountySheriff's Department warns people against visiting the course afterhours. The department will keep a close watch for intruders.
It might be December but that is not stopping some people from "hanging 10" in Michigan.
A driver escaped safely after its vehicle crashed into the Grand River in Ottawa County Friday morning.
We get a brief break from the "lake-effect machine" Friday.