Prehistoric shark expert to visit Darke County Parks


GREENVILLE — Darke County Parks is excited to welcome Dr. Charles “Chuck” Ciampaglio to the Nature Center at noon on Feb. 6 to discuss his fascination with all things sharks.

Ciampaglio is a doctor of paleontology, a professor of earth and environmental sciences at Wright State University-Lake Campus, and was featured on the 2012 Discovery Channel “Shark Week” episode “Sharkzilla” as the expert on megalodon, which means “big tooth.” It was the largest shark to ever live reaching the size of a semi-truck and trailer. Megalodon lived 2-15 million years ago and is known to have eaten whales. Its teeth were the size of a human hand, and its mouth was large enough to swallow a small boat.

Ciampaglio is one of the only scientists in the United States actively studying prehistoric sharks of North America, and he has lead paleontological digs everywhere from Wyoming to the Carolinas, bringing students with him whenever he can. Shark teeth are commonly unearthed on these digs.

Ciampaglio said, “Teeth are the business end of any vertebrate, and nowhere in the animal kingdom will you find a greater range of tooth designs than in sharks. They contain the record of life on earth through their form and function” because they have been around for some 400 million years.”

He is excited to share not only about megalodon, but about all kinds of other prehistoric sharks he has studied. He intends to tell visitors everything they wanted to know about sharks but were afraid to ask. This lecture is free to the public. For more information about this program or any other Park District program or to register, give the Nature Center a call at 937-548-0165.

Staff report

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