Megalodon was the largest predatory fish ever discovered. At 39-100 feet long, this whale eating machine lived in the ocean 16-1.6 million years ago in the mid Pliocene period. Some people believe that a Megalodon still exists in some oceans today but very deep down. There is absolutely no scientific evidence to support such beliefs. Some people claim to have seen huge shark fins, and whales with enormous bites taken out of them, however the answer is that the most likely culprit is the great white shark.
Facts about Megalodon
- Megalodon means huge tooth
- Megalodon could open its mouth up to 10 feet wide
- Its teeth were the size of a mans hand or more.
- It is the great white shark's cousin
- These were alive when great whites were around,many think these are Megalodon babies but these are clearly wrong.
- It is the greatest predatory fish to ever swim the ocean. With Liopleuredon being the largest predator ever.
- Megalodon was able to reach a maximum of 100 feet. It could have weighed 103 tons. It had the strongest bite force of any prehistoric predator: a whooping 18-20 tons(182,576 newtons).
Supporting the Megalodons existence
- The Coelacanth (Latimeria chalumnae) was thought to be extinct for more than 60 million years until a live specimen was captured in 1938. We now know that there is a small but definitely surviving population of these ancient fish in very deep waters off eastern Africa and another was recently discovered off Indonesia. Who's to say that Megalodon does not also survive?
- Less than 5% of the deep-sea has been explored, and even less than that sampled biologically. Yet we know that sharks live at least as deep as 12,000 feet (3,660 metres) and Sperm Whales (Physeter macrocephalus) are believed to dive to 10,000 feet (3,050 metres) in search of squid. If there's enough food down there for 60-foot (18-metre) whales, there is probably enough to support Megalodon (as it was a whale eater.
Denying the existence
- It is true that coelacanths were believed to have died out long ago, but just because one species thought to be extinct turned up alive and well doesn't necessarily mean that Megalodon survives too.
- Although very little abyssal life has been sampled, the deep-sea is a very difficult environment demanding numerous significant specializations. Amount of food in the deep-sea is not the issue. Megalodon seems to have been limited to warm, shallow seas near coastlines and there is no evidence it had any specializations that would have enabled it to survive the intense cold of the deep-sea.