Bone found on beach by Callum, 9, may have been from a woolly rhino
- Credit: Brittany Woodman
The mystery around a bone found on the north Norfolk coast by a nine-year-old boy may have been solved.
Callum Hoare found the unidentified bone on the beach between Sheringham and West Runton on Wednesday, October 13 while walking his dog with his dad, Chris.
They posted a photo of bone on Facebook, generating hundreds of comments and shares across the platform.
It was a mystery - until it ended up being shared with a fossil group, where Nynke de Boer, a Dutch archaeologist, spotted it.
She got in touch with the family and said it appeared to be from a woolly rhino, a species which is thought to have lived 14,000 years ago.
“We wanted to get it confirmed with her directly, and she said that it was anywhere between 25 to 50,000 years old, and it was rare to find them in this good condition,” Mr Hoare said.
“We had people posting comments saying 'finding a bone like this is a bucket list find for any archaeologist or bone finder', we were thinking 'is it really that good'?
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“It would have been embarrassing if it was a cow bone, but we were certain it wasn't.
“That was good for us, we were not wasting everyone’s time, because we were worried about coming up red-faced.”
This announcement will also cement Callum’s celebrity status after he was the talk of his classroom due to the popularity of the post online.
Mr Hoare said the discovery had only increased his son's interest in the natural world.
The avid fossil hunter has a collection of around 40 belemnites, the fossilised remains of part of an extinct mollusc. The woolly rhino will now be the star of his growing collection.
“He just has a real interest in wildlife and can just reel off facts, he is like a mini Steve Backshall,” he said.
“Callum just loves his wildlife, we have a pond in the garden and we thought it would be a flash in the pan - but he is out there every day looking after it.”
He said it was a shared interest which brought them together and prompted plenty of quality time.
“I work away down in London, so I always make the most of it when I am back," he said.
"It is really good to have that time together.”