Loch Ness Monster's tooth found?

From: http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=44687

Students allegedly discover item on Scottish lake, but skeptic cries hoax
Posted: June 10, 2005
1:00 a.m. Eastern

By Ron Strom
© 2005 WorldNetDaily.com

Item allegedly found in deer carcass.

Could it be a large tooth from the famed Loch Ness monster that some believe stalks the depths of the Scottish lake – or just an antler that broke off a local deer during a fight with another animal?

That's the question a researcher of the Loch Ness mystery hopes to answer – if only he had possession of the "tooth," which was confiscated from two college students that allegedly found it.

According to Bill McDonald, who says he is a forensics investigator and former Marine, the story began in March when the American students were spending Spring Break in Scotland. They reportedly got a local boat owner to take them on a tour of Loch Ness, during which they spotted the back half of a dead deer on the shore's edge.

A website describing their experience, LochNessTooth.com, says the two examined the carcass and spotted something protruding from the deer's rib.

"It was a tooth - about 4 inches long, barbed and very sharp!" states the description.

The pair got photos of the "tooth" and shot some video. They claim they then flagged down a passing boat, which happened to be manned by someone claiming to be government ranger of some kind. The two claim the official confiscated the item along with one videotape. Reportedly, the camera operator had recently changed tapes, so he was able to obtain a previous cassette containing relevant footage.

The students, who are unnamed, say they are determined to get the "tooth" back from Scottish authorities. They found McDonald via the Internet and hooked up with him.

"Mr. McDonald says the tooth will prove his own theories apparently – developed for some author," the site states. "He swears he knows what the creature is and has investors ready to buy the tooth from us."

The author referenced is Steve Alten, writer of "The Loch," for whom McDonald did research in Scotland in December.

According to a statement online, McDonald claims to know the species of Nessie, the Loch Ness monster, how it entered Loch Ness prior to 1930 and why it is trapped. He says he is "looking for the largest print media venues upon which to deliver never-before-seen photos of the tooth and renditions of what the monster actually looks like."

The students' website, however, has several photos of the "tooth" as well as a link to the video that was shot.

McDonald claims he has met with "marine biologists, paleontologists, and board members from several prestigious museums who are lending their support in recovering the tooth from the Highland Government (offering $100,000 in reward money)."

'Nothing more than an antler'

Rob McConnell, a Canadian broadcaster who interviewed McDonald about the finding on the air, is convinced the "tooth" story is a hoax.

Antlers of a muntjac deer.

Said McConnell in a press release: "According to a number of experts in Canada and the United Kingdom, McDonald's tooth is nothing more than an antler from a roe muntjac deer.

"It is not a tooth from the famed Loch Ness monster or a new species that McDonald was claiming it to be."

McConnell says McDonald was evasive during the interview, which can be heard on the talk-show host's website, refusing to answer specific questions about the college students, the boat owner and the alleged confiscation by a Scottish "water bailiff."

Said McConnell: "My apologies to all those who truly believed that a tooth of the ever elusive Nessie … the monster of the Loch Ness … the mythical and mystical creature of the Loch had really been found. Sightings of Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Sandman, Tooth Fairy or tales of a cow jumping over the moon carry more weight than Bill McDonald's self-centered attempt to try and sell his fictional tale of 'The Tooth That Got Away.'"

McConnell believes McDonald is hyping the alleged discovery to help drive sales of Alten's book.

'Pretty exciting stuff'

McDonald told WND the $100,000 reward will go to "anybody who provides information necessary for me to sue in the Scottish courts for custody of the tooth."

Rather than a government employee, McDonald says the person who took the item and videotape could have been a local "who didn't like it that Americans had gotten their hands on some kind of evidence regarding Nessie."

Admitted McDonald: "Or the whole thing could be a hoax perpetrated on and through the use of my two American clients. … Until I recover the relic, I cannot prove whether or not it is a real biological relic."

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But, emphasized McDonald, "if it is, it is possibly the greatest discovery to come out of the United Kingdom zoologically in history."

The investigator says if the item is proved to be the tooth of a sea creature, the animal from which it came would have a six-foot-long head.

Concluded McDonald: "Imagine a large amphibious fish predator with a six-foot head. It's pretty exciting stuff."