VENICE, Fla. – Michael Nastasio, the owner and founder of Black Gold Fossil Charters, found a megalodon shark tooth measuring 6.25 inches off the southern Sarasota County coast in Florida a few weeks ago.
He makes a living captaining charters and scuba adventures to find the ancient fossils.
Nastasio said he has seen one about the same size before, but it was broken. He came across this one, fully intact, at the end of one of his excursions.
"It was on the last dive of the day and the dive actually started off kind of bad, so the area I was trying to dive was pretty much covered up, it was all shelled out," said Nastasio.
Nastasio said the seafloor was covered with shells, so it was hard to make out any shark teeth.
"I swam for probably 20-30 minutes before I found any material that I actually liked, and it wasn’t until, two kicks after that, and I saw it looking at me and just, mind blown," Nastasio said.
He has spent over a decade diving for shark teeth, and says a megalodon shark tooth this large with this color, is extremely rare.
The massive predators went extinct about 2.6 million years ago, according to researchers at the University of Florida.