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Tolegre Caves: South Garo Hills Discovery



  May 18, 2024

Tolegre Caves: South Garo Hills Discovery



An international team, organized by Core Geo Expeditions, conducted a profound exploration of the caves in the Tolegre area of the South Garo Hills, which has led to potentially groundbreaking paleontological findings. This exploration involved a diverse group of experts from India, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and Romania, including biologists and speleologists.

 Discovery of the Tolegre Fossil

During their expedition between March 5 and 22, 2024, the team discovered what is believed to be a significant fossil — termed the “Tolegre Fossil”. Found in the Gongdap Kol, a temporary sinkhole, this fossil features a large jaw with visible black fangs, suggesting its origins from the Middle Eocene epoch, approximately 38 to 43 million years ago.

 Potential Identification as Archaeoceti

Initial assessments by Dr. Lionel Cavin of the Museum of Natural History in Geneva suggest that the fossil might belong to the group known as Archaeoceti, early ancestors of modern whales. If further analysis confirms the genus, this would mark the first discovery of its kind in India, joining other notable finds across India and Pakistan.

 Implications of the Discovery

This discovery could significantly advance our understanding of the evolutionary history of marine mammals in this region. It also highlights the rich paleontological potential of the Siju Formation, known for its diverse sedimentary layers.

 Support and Further Research

The exploration received substantial support from local authorities, educational institutions, and the community, emphasizing the collaborative nature of this scientific endeavor. Additional visits for further documentation and analysis underscore the ongoing commitment to fully understanding the implications of this find.

The final results of this expedition will be detailed in a comprehensive report later this year, which could provide new insights into the paleontological landscape of India and contribute to global understanding of marine mammal evolution.

This event not only showcases the importance of international cooperation in scientific explorations but also the rich geological tapestry of the South Garo Hills, which has proven to be a treasure trove of knowledge for the scientific community.



SRIRAM’s


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