Isle of Wight extinct elephant fossil on display in Sandown
A fossil from an extinct species of elephant dating back 100,000 years has gone on display on the Isle of Wight.
The shoulder bone of the Palaeoloxodon antiquus was found protruding from the sand on the west coast of the island by local resident Paul Hollingshead.
The bone is at the Dinosaur Isle museum in Sandown and is thought to date from the Eemian interglacial period.
Mr Hollingshead said: "I was shocked how big it was and spent around two and a half-hours digging it out."
He found the bone back in March but the museum said it had taken a long time to conserve so that it was fit for display.
Alex Peaker from Dinosaur Isle said: "You don't really associate elephants with the Isle of Wight but this find shows they did roam the island many years ago."
Mr Hollingshead, who has donated the bone to the museum, said: "I remember it was a big five-metre tide, so I knew the water would go out a long way, when I saw what looked like a bit of bone showing from the sand.
"I stopped and realised it was a bit bigger, so I started clearing all of the sand and stones away from it.
"I was hoping it was a dinosaur bone, so was quite shocked to find out it was from an elephant."