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Patterns of megalodon (Carcharocles megalodon) distribution during the Miocene and also Pliocene dates can been estimated using the places of accumulated fossil teeth.
Encyclopædia audioeditorfree.com, Inc./Kenny Chmielewski
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Understanding Megalodon
Megalodon was the biggest shark, and likely the biggest fish, that ever before lived. One adult megalodon to be so large that no other animal in the habitat endangered it. Scientists examining its fossil teeth have actually been able come infer numerous other things about megalodon’s life and also lifestyle. Just how well perform you understand one that the world’s most menacing creatures? (Every answer have the right to be uncovered in audioeditorfree.com’s article around megalodon.)

Physical features

Megalodon to be the biggest fish ever known, a designation based upon discoveries of hundreds of fossil teeth and a grasp of vertebrae. Tooth-shape similarities between megalodon and modern great white sharks (Carcharodon carcharias) suggest that the two varieties may have been near relatives, and thus megalodon most likely resembled that varieties in appearance—that is, together a bulky torpedo-shaped fish with a conical snout, huge pectoral and also dorsal fins, and also a solid crescent-shaped tail. Estimates of body length are calculated using the statistics relationship in between the dimension of megalodon’s fossil teeth and also the teeth and also body massive of contemporary white sharks and other life relatives. This data suggests that maturation adult megalodons had a mean size of 10.2 metres (about 33.5 feet), the largest specimens measure 17.9 metres (58.7 feet) long. Part scientists, however, contend that the largest develops may have measured approximately 25 metres (82 feet) long. Researches estimate the adult body mass ranged from around 30 metric tons (1 metric ton = 1,000 kg; about 66,000 pounds) to an ext than 65 metric tons (about 143,000 pounds), adult females being larger (in both length and mass) than adult males.


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Studies calculation that the human body mass of adult megalodons (Carcharocles megalodon) ranged from roughly 30,000 kg (about 66,000 pounds) to more than 65,000 kg (about 143,000 pounds), adult females being larger (in both length and mass) 보다 adult males. In contrast, most white sharks (Carcharodon carcharias) weigh between 680 and 1,800 kg (1,500 and also 4,000 pounds).

Megalodon teeth are similar to those of modern white sharks in the they space triangular, serrated, and symmetrical. They different from modern white shark this in the they room larger and thicker, the serrations on every tooth occur in continuous intervals, and they possess a bourlette (a darker, chevron-shaped region near the tooth’s root). The biggest extant megalodon tooth procedures 17.8 centimeter (6.9 inches) in length, almost three times much longer than those of modern-day white sharks (which are typically about 5.4 cm <2.1 inches> long). In addition, megalodon own a ferocious bite; its bite diameter to be 3 metres (about 9.8 feet), numerous times bigger than the bite diameter the averaged-sized white sharks.


Megalodon (Carcharocles megalodon) this (right), substantially larger 보다 the modern good white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) tooth (left).

Megalodon is believed to have regulated its human body temperature in a manner similar to the of modern-day white sharks, in that it was not specifically cold-blooded like most fish. White sharks generate warmth through the convulsion of your swimming muscles, and also this warm raises the temperature of parts of the shark’s body over that that the neighboring water, an adaptation called regional endothermy (which is a type of warm-bloodedness). This adaptation could have enabled megalodon to swim and hunt in colder waters, providing it exclusive accessibility to food in those locations.

Reproduction and also territoriality

Megalodon is assumed to have created live young. It is not known, however, even if it is the types was ovoviviparous (in which eggs are preserved within the mommy until lock hatch) or viviparous (in which fertilized embryos derive constant nourishment native the mother). Estimates of body size using juvenile teeth imply that freshly birthed young might have been at least 2 metres (6.6 feet) in length.

Few details room known about megalodon courtship, however the varieties appears to have actually used nurseries because that its young. A 2010 study identified a megalodon nursery along the Panamanian coast, i beg your pardon was characterized by the visibility of juvenile this from various stages the life. Researchers posit the this shallow warm-water nursery provided young megalodons with access to a diverse selection of smaller, more-abundant food and allowed adults to better intercept strikes from various other predatory shark species, such together hammerhead sharks. Together the young sharks prospered older, the is thought that they would certainly make forays right into deeper water come pursue larger animals.

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Little is known about how individuals dispersed after castle matured. Because megalodon is believed to have actually occupied an environmental niche comparable to the of the white shark, part studies have actually assumed the megalodon most likely ranged over locations comparable in dimension to the range of contemporary white sharks—about 1,000 square km (386 square miles).