Which Mammal Has The Most Teeth?
Teeth are handy tools to have around and while our 32 adult teeth serve we humans well, it’s a puny number compared to some of the packed jaws found around the animal kingdom. Bat-eared foxes and opossums can have up to 50 teeth. Giant armadillos have 80 to 100 teeth that they use to churn through their omnivorous diet of mostly plants and bugs.
While having up to three times the number of teeth humans do certainly puts those aforementioned mammals in a dental class well beyond ours, all of us have nothing on dolphins. Oceanic dolphins, in their long mouths, can have up to a staggering 260 teeth depending on their species.
What’s most interesting about dolphin teeth is that they didn’t evolve to chew and dolphins rarely engage in any sort of chewing or tearing action. Instead, the numerous teeth perfectly interlock with each other to allow the dolphin to grab its prey like a bear trap and then swallow it whole while it is stunned.
Unlike sharks, also notoriously toothy creatures that share the ocean with dolphins, the dolphin cannot regrow teeth and all tooth losses are–like in humans–permanent.