12,000-Year-Old Mammoth Tooth Found by Fisherman Auctioned Off to Help Ukraine amid Invasion

Mammoth Tooth Molar - All Proceeds To Be Donated To Ukrainian Crisis
Mammoth Tooth Molar - All Proceeds To Be Donated To Ukrainian Crisis


The Sunday eBay auction of a 12,000-year-old, fossilized woolly mammoth tooth raised $10,300 to aid Ukrainians affected by Russia's invasion.

According to MassLive, New England fisherman Tim Rider found the 11-inch fossil weighing seven pounds while fishing for scallops in Newburyport, Massachusetts, during December 2021.

The fossil's eBay auction proceeds will be donated to World Central Kitchen, an international nonprofit helping those in Ukraine by providing free meals.

Russia's attack on Ukraine continues after their forces launched a large-scale invasion on Feb. 24 — the first major land conflict in Europe in decades. Details of the fighting change by the day, but hundreds of civilians have already been reported dead or wounded, including children. More than a million Ukrainians have also fled, the United Nations says.

The invasion, ordered by Russian President Vladimir Putin, has drawn condemnation around the world and increasingly severe economic sanctions against Russia.

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"Obviously, I can't solve the world's problems as a fisherman," said Rider per New England Cable News (NECN). "But I can contribute to help the people that are suffering."

After the fascinating discovery, Rider turned over the fossil to the University of New Hampshire (UNH) for examination, added MassLive.

"I always love thinking about the landscape in New England," added Will Clyde, a Geology professor at UNH, per NECN. "With mammoths and mastodons walking around, and in terms of geological times, that wasn't that long ago."

Mammoth Tooth Molar - All Proceeds To Be Donated To Ukrainian Crisis
Mammoth Tooth Molar - All Proceeds To Be Donated To Ukrainian Crisis


Rider and the New England Fishmongers, a group working to "works to revolutionize the New England seafood industry," decided to auction off the fossil after having the item examined.

Various countries have also pledged aid (or military support) to Ukraine's resistance against Russia's attacks, with NATO forces massing in the region around Ukraine. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called for peace talks — so far unsuccessful — while urging his country to fight back.

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Putin, 69, insists Ukraine has historic ties to Russia, and he is acting in the best security interests of his country. Zelenskyy, 44, vowed not to bend. "Nobody is going to break us, we're strong, we're Ukrainians," he told the European Union in a speech in the early days of the fighting, adding, "Life will win over death. And light will win over darkness."

The Russian attack on Ukraine is an evolving story, with information changing quickly. Follow PEOPLE's complete coverage of the war here, including stories from citizens on the ground and ways to help.