Megalodon discovery: Scientists reveal giant shark’s
Researchers in the U.K. have revealed the true size
of the megalodon, the prehistoric giant shark. Some may be disappointed that it
was not a 100 foot version of the great white shark as portrayed in the movies.
Experts from the University of Bristol and Swansea
University have shed new light on the giant megalodon, which is history’s
largest marine predator. While the modern great white shark can be over 20 feet
long, the megalodon, which lived from 23 million to 3 million years ago, was
over twice the length of a great white. Scientists can now reveal the size of
the rest of the megalodon’s body, including its huge fins.
The researchers note that megalodon fossils are
typically huge triangular teeth larger than a human hand. Armed with data from
these fossils, scientists used mathematical methods to ascertain the size and
proportions of the megalodons. Comparisons were also made with the creature’s
“Megalodon is not a direct ancestor of the great
white but is equally related to other macropredatory sharks such as the Makos,
Salmon shark and Porbeagle shark, as well as the great white,” said Dr.
Catalina Pimiento of Swansea University, who supervised the study.
Estimates suggest it grew to between 15 and 18
metres in length, and therefore a 52.5-foot-long
megalodon likely had a head 15.3 feet long, a dorsal fin approximately 5.3 feet
tall and a tail around 12.6 feet high, the scientists found. “This means an
adult human could stand on the back of this shark and would be about the same
height as the dorsal fin,” they said, in the statement.
Some will be disappointed that it is not a huge version of the great white .It in fact had a blunter nose and was not as large as some expected. Still a monster though.