Megalodon: one of the strongest and largest predators

Megalodon is a species of shark that became extinct about one and a half million years ago. Belonged to the type of chordates, the class of cartilaginous fish, the superorder of sharks. This species was one of the strongest and largest predators in the history of vertebrates. According to studies of the remains of the skeleton, the megalodon was of gigantic size: its length reached twenty-two meters, and its weight was fifty tons.

This shark’s teeth were three times the size of a white shark’s, and much stronger and more evenly serrated. The diagonal length of the megalodon’s teeth reached eighteen centimeters. In total, the shark’s mouth contained two hundred and seventy-six teeth. They were in five rows.

Presumably, the size of the jaws of large individuals reached two meters. The bite force of a megalodon was one hundred and eighty-two thousand newtons, which is ten times greater than that of a white shark, and five times greater than that of a tyrannosaurus rex. Of all predators known to science, megalodon had the strongest bite 25-30 tons per square centimeter.

Its serrated teeth were capable of ripping chunks out of the victim’s flesh. The teeth of the megalodon were quite thick, and their roots were quite large compared to the overall height of the teeth. Such teeth were an excellent cutting tool, they rarely broke, even when cutting bones, and could hold strong prey well.

The cartilaginous skull of the megalodon compared to the white shark was stronger and thicker. His massive jaws gave his eyes a “piggy” look. The fins were much larger and thicker than those of the great white shark. The number of vertebrae of megalodon exceeded the number of vertebrae of all shark species known to science.

Found in 1926 in Belgium, the vertebral column of the megalodon consisted of one hundred and fifty vertebrae, while the largest of them reached one hundred and fifty-five millimeters in diameter.

Megalodon’s huge size, its ability to swim quickly, plus powerful jaws and giant jagged teeth made it a super-predator. It fed on cetaceans, porpoises, sirens, pinnipeds, sea turtles and large fish.

According to the fossil remains, megalodon was distributed throughout the world. He was a predator at the top of the food chain. Presumably, megalodons lived in the period from twenty-eight million years ago to one and a half million years ago.

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