How sharks keep their teeth clean
9 exciting facts about teeth in the animal kingdom
teeth to have different tasks and therefore they are also available in different forms. Both in animals and in humans. For example, we have incisors, canines, and molars. We use our incisors to scrape off food or cut it into bite-sized pieces, and we use the molars to chew it. What kind of teeth do animals have?
Horse Teeth - Photo: Studio 37 / Shutterstock
9. What kind of teeth are there?
Task: Climbing aid, „Tool“, defense
In the animal kingdom, canines can get very long. They are then called tusks. Walruses and elephants, for example, have some. Walruses use their tusks as a climbing aid to get out of the water. In addition, they defend themselves against polar bears with their long pearly whites and can injure them so badly that they suffer from the wounds for weeks or even die from them. Elephants also use their tusks to defend themselves. But you also use them for digging or lifting tree trunks.
Walrus - Photo: BMJ / Shutterstock
Task: prey animals hold tight
In predators, the canines are much longer and larger than any other teeth. That is why they are also known as fangs.
Task: prey animal cut, Bones set out
Not to be confused with the fangs or the canines. Fangs lie in the back of the jaw and have the task of cutting through muscle strands, tendons, cartilage and bones.
Task: cut off, Cut
Incisors are mainly used by herbivores to cut grass and other plants.
Herbivores have molars so that they can grind food into a food pulp.
Tasmanian Devil - Photo: Bernhard Richter / Shutterstock
8. Do animals also have toothache?
Animals, like us, can develop toothaches and suffer terribly from them. Purulent tooth roots are usually to blame.
7. Do animals have to brush their teeth?
Why do we need to brush our teeth when animals never do? Ok, "never" is not entirely true, but toothbrushes are not used. Some animals have their teeth brushed, for example crocodiles from birds, so-called crocodile watchers). Most of them actually manage without dental care. In addition, animals eat very differently than humans. We eat a lot of sweet things and use them to breed lots of bacteria on our teeth. Aside from us humans, only pets like dogs and cats get holes in their teeth.
6. Why sharks and manatees never have to go to the dentist
Sharks often lose a dozen teeth when hunting. That can be up to 30,000 teeth in a single shark's life. The teeth of sharks do not just grow back, like our second teeth. Several rows of teeth grow back behind the "main" biting whites. If a tooth breaks off in the first row, a new tooth moves up immediately. Like a new ball in the ball drum moves up in a revolver. This is why the shark bite is also called the "revolver bite".
It is similar with the manatee. She prefers to eat plants, but also a lot of sand, which damages her teeth. In the back of the jaw, new teeth keep growing and slowly pushing forward. About 1 cm per month. The manatee never has more than six teeth per jaw at the same time.
Great White Shark - Photo: Dominique de La Croix / Shutterstock
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