It may be difficult to comprehend how big the megalodon (Otodus megalodon) was, especially since they have been extinct for millions of years. Although you may recognize that it is the largest shark that has ever lived.
We have been able to construct a reasonably accurate picture of these ancient sharks thanks to experts. More precise megalodon size comparisons are included in this.
Have you ever considered what it would be like to swim with a megalodon? If they were bigger than dinosaurs, what happened? So you can see how these ancient sea overlords compare to blue whales, dinosaurs, and even today’s great white sharks, we’ve built this complete megalodon size comparison chart.
The Megalodon’s maximum size is estimated to be 60 to 70 feet long and weigh 50 to 70 tons by the most current, scientifically accepted estimates. The Great White Shark, on the other hand, weighs around 21 feet and 3 1/2 tons when fully grown.
The Historical Background
In 1909, Bashford Dean tried to estimate the Megalodon’s size by rebuilding its jaw. Megalodon was projected to be 30 meters (98 feet) long based on the jaw reconstruction. Megalodon’s size was just the first thing that came to mind.
As scientific processes improved, methods for assessing the size of extinct creatures based on fossil evidence and jaw reconstruction have become more refined over time. Improved knowledge about the structure of the jaw, as well as how muscles provide structure to the rest of the body, resulted from new ways of researching these topics.
The size of Megalodon was lowered to roughly 70 percent of the original estimate (around 21 meters, or 68.6 feet) after careful examination of Dean’s findings. That size has stood the test of time and has been proven through more sophisticated methods for analyzing fossil evidence in recent years.
The Megalodon was once thought to be closely connected to the Great White, but as more fossil evidence has been discovered, it’s been established that these two sharks are not. As a result, several of the initial findings had to be revised.
That allowed scientists to have a greater chance for precision since it provided additional quantitative alternatives for calculating size.
All of the evidence that has been discovered to date suggests that Megalodon’s size was approximately 60 feet in length, despite the fact that there is no way to fully guarantee it.
What Did Megalodon Look Like?
Megalodon is usually depicted as a huge white shark in most reconstructions. This is now considered to be flawed.
The O is a symbol of obstinacy, determination, and strength. When contrasted to the enormous white, whose jaws were flatter and almost squashed, megalodon had a much shorter nose, or rostrum. Its pectoral fins were likewise much longer than those of the blue shark, allowing it to carry its weight and size.
We now know that this is not the case, and megalodon is actually from a different lineage of shark than megalodon,’ Emma explains. ‘A lot of reconstructions have megalodon looking like a bigger version of the great white shark because people thought they were related.’
Otodus obliquus, a 55-million-year-old shark that grew to be around 10 meters in length, is the oldest known megalodon ancestor. Yet, the lineage of megalodon is estimated to be over 100 million years old, extending back to Cretalamna appendiculata.
The progenitor of the great white shark existed alongside megalodon, as we’ve discovered more and more fossils. According to Emma, some scientists believe they were in a race with each other.
How Big is a Megalodon?
Science is one of the most fascinating subjects. We’re constantly learning more about animals, even those that have been extinct for 3.6 million years like the megalodon, because it’s constantly changing.
In reality, it wasn’t until a high school class discovered the formula previously used to calculate the length of the megalodon wasn’t correct that we started to get a better idea of just how massive these extinct sea monsters were.
Scientists thought the megalodon was roughly 50 to 60 feet long up until then. Yet, megalodons were not thought to be more than 65 feet long when the latest breakthroughs were discovered – that is the length of two school buses!
They weigh more than two school buses, despite their potential size of just two. A single megalodon may have weighed as much as almost six school buses, with an estimated weight range of anywhere from 28,000 pounds (for smaller mature males) to more than 143,000 pounds (for the largest females).
The megalodon is not a sea creature you want to swim with, with teeth that are as long as seven inches (the same length as a butter knife).
Megalodons are without a doubt one of the world’s largest creatures. How do these compare to humans and other big fish in the deep ocean?
Megalodon vs. Human Size Comparison
Do you realize how big you would be compared to one of these ancient titans if you had already made the decision that you wouldn’t want to confront one?
So, to put it another way, you wouldn’t need a megalodon size comparison chart to know you had been a simple snack for these monsters.
First of all, assuming the megalodon had a 5-foot-and-3-inch dorsal fin, you would be about the same size as it. That would make you less than half their height, about half the length of a London bus! You’d be about half their height, roughly 13 feet tall.
Replicas of megalodon jaws may be seen in a number of museums, and you may take photos in them. These enormous sharks had a width of almost 7 feet and housed roughly 250 teeth in five rows. Most individuals could fit securely inside the mouth of one of these animals.
Just a megalodon’s tooth might weigh more than a pound in terms of weight. Humans have a typical tooth, right? It weighs just 0.018 ounces, or 0.0011 pounds. To be as heavy as a megalodon, that would require around 900 human teeth!
The Biggest Shark in the World
Megalodon fossils (Otodus megalodon, formerly Carcharodon or Carcharocles megalodon) were discovered 20 million years ago. The massive shark ruled the oceans for the following 13 million years until it went extinct only 3.6 million years ago.
O Megalodon was both the world’s biggest shark and the world’s biggest fish. It was three times the size of the largest recorded great white shark and grew to between 15 and 18 meters in length.
These figures are based on the size of the animal’s teeth, which may be up to 18 centimetres long, without a complete megalodon skeleton. Megalodon is actually a term that means “big tooth.” These powerful creatures ate a lot of things, which these teeth can reveal.
Megalodon vs. Blue Whale
How does the world’s biggest animal, the largest shark ever known, compare to the world’s biggest? In terms of both size and weight, the blue whale is superior to the megalodon, despite what you may believe.
The largest megalodon size estimations top out at almost 227,510 pounds, more than 2 Stonehenge Sarsen stones, if we examine them individually. The blue whale, on the other hand, stands out against these ancient sharks due to its minimum average weight of 290,000 pounds.
The largest blue whale was most likely at least 75% bigger than the largest megalodons, with the biggest blue whale ever documented weighing 418,878 pounds.
The largest blue whale ever measured was 110 feet in length, 20 feet longer than the megalodon. Between these sea monsters’ heights, there’s roughly half a telephone pole of distance.
There is a possibility that the megalodon may have hunted the docile blue whale, which would have had little chance of putting up much resistance against five rows of butterknife-size teeth.
Comparison With Modern Day and Extinct Animals
The scientific community has concluded that Megalodon was bigger, based on both weight and length, since it was comparable to the whale shark (approximately 12.65 metres or about 41.50 feet). Megalodon was much larger than the great white shark, which could only be around half its size.
Megalodon has been discovered to be substantially bigger than massive theropod dinosaurs like Spinosaurus, T-Rex, and huge ocean-going marine reptiles like Basilosaurus and Tylosaurus. Those animals didn’t match Megalodon’s length, despite being at least 8 meters long and frequently reaching 17.5 meters.
Megalodon vs. Mosasaurus
The megalodon existed after the largest dinosaurs had disappeared from the Earth, despite being a prehistoric shark species.
The mosasaurus, which existed some 66 million years ago (over 40 million years before megalodon appeared) is an extinct animal. What does a megalodon and a mosasaurus size comparison look like, despite the fact that they never shared the ancient oceans with each other?
The largest mosasaurus fossils discovered that these reptiles could grow to be 56 feet long, almost 10 feet taller than the letter in the Hollywood sign, indicating that they may reach this size. Although only by about 4 to 11 feet, this is still shorter than the megalodon.
Only 30,000 pounds of Mosasaurus weighed against the megalodon’s enormous 100,000-plus pound structure! Even with the greatest estimates of megalodon size, it would take approximately 8 mosasaurus to even up the balance!
Megalodon and modern great white sharks (Carcharodon carcharias) have tooth similarities that indicate that the two species were related, and thus megalodon looked like them in form, as a hefty torpedo-shaped fish with a conical snout, huge pectoral and dorsal fins, and a robust crescent-shaped tail.
The statistical link between the size of megalodon’s fossil teeth and that of modern white sharks and other extant relatives is used to calculate body length estimates.
The largest specimens of mature adult megalodons were found to be 17 meters (58 feet) long, according to this data. Others believe that the largest species may have been up to 25 meters (82 feet) long, according to certain researchers.
Adult males were expected to be bigger (in terms of length and weight) than adult females, according to estimates. Body mass ranged from approximately 30 metric tons (1 metric ton = 1,000 kg; roughly 66,000 pounds) to over 65 metric tons (about 143,000 pounds).
What did Megalodon Eat?
Megalodon would have eaten meat – most likely whales and large fish, as well as other sharks,’ Emma explains.
Big prey would have included animals as small as dolphins and as big as humpback whales, if you were that big you’d need a lot of food.’
The remains of fossilized whale bones provide further evidence of megalodon’s feeding habits. Cut marks of megalodon teeth have been discovered on some of them, etched in the surface.
Some people believe that the teeth tips that have broken off during a million-year-old feeding frenzy are included in this group.
Reproduction and Territoriality
It is thought that Megalodon has the ability to create live offspring. The species’ ovoviviparity (the retention of eggs within the mother until they hatch) or viviparity (the replenishment of fertilized embryos from the mother) is unknown, however.
The assertion that freshly born young could have been at least 2 meters (6.6 feet) long is based on measurements of body size using juvenile teeth.
Megalodon mating is little understood, but it seems to have utilised nurseries for its young. A megalodon nursery was discovered off the coast of Panamanian in 2010, and juvenile teeth from different stages in life were found there.
Young megalodons may have had access to a wider variety of smaller, more-abundant prey and adults may have been able to better intercept attacks from other predatory shark species, such as hammerhead sharks, according to scientists. As the juvenile sharks matured, it is likely that they will venture into deeper water to pursue bigger creatures.
After they grew up, little is known about how people dispersed. Several investigations have assumed that megalodon likely ranged over regions comparable in size to the range of contemporary white sharks, which is around 1,000 square km (386 square miles).
Extinction of a Mega Shark
By the end of the Pliocene (2.6 million years ago), when the world entered a period of global cooling, megalodon had become extinct, according to scientists. Although the exact date of the final megalodon’s death is uncertain, new research suggests it occurred at least 3.6 million years ago.
As temperatures dropped and the number of species at the base of the food chain decreased, scientists believe that up to a third of all large marine animals, including 43% of turtles and 35% of sea birds, became extinct as a result.
There are a variety of ways in which the planet’s cooling may have impacted the megalodon’s extinction.
The collapse in ocean temperatures is likely to have had a serious impact on the adult sharks, who are dependent on tropical waters. The megalodon’s prey might have gone extinct or adapted to the cooler waters, leaving the sharks unable to follow them.