The gigantic Megalodon, which originally had a robust build, gains a new physique| Trending Viral hub

When you hear “megalodon,” what comes to mind? If the answer is a gigantic version of a great white shark, the latest revelation in megalodon research might make you reconsider. A recent discovery Researchers break this common perception of the extinct species and give it a reinvented shape, describing it as slimmer than the great white shark.

What shark is similar to megalodon?

The modern great white shark has often been referenced by replicating the body of the megalodon (Otodus megalodon), who lived between 15 and 3.6 million years ago.

Originally, scientists thought the two species were closely related due to similarities in their teeth. They first placed the megalodon in the same family as the great white shark, Lamnidae. However, closer examination revealed that the megalodon teeth actually had slight differences in serration and shape, so it was reclassified in the extinct family Otodontidae.

A new study published in Electronic Paleontology He has now sculpted a revised view of the megalodon’s body, dissolving the idea that it was simply a larger version of a great white shark.

“The remarkably simple evidence that O. megalodon It had a thinner body than the great white shark and was hidden in plain sight,” said Kenshu Shimada, a paleobiology professor at DePaul University and lead author, in a news release.

A transcendental capture

The study arose of a disparity between the reported durations of O. megalodon vertebrae fossils. An incomplete set of vertebrae from a megalodon specimen was reported to be a total of 11.1 meters in length. However, according to another earlier study, the same fossil specimen was estimated to measure only 9.2 meters in length, deduced from the relationship between the diameters of the largest vertebrae and the body lengths measured from multiplied modern great white sharks.

“It was a ‘eureka moment’ when our research team realized the discrepancy between the two previously published lengths for the same Megalodon specimen,” Shimada said in the press release.

Although this discovery has finally confirmed a distinct constitution for the megalodon, more research will be needed to fully map the shark’s body.

“In the future, any meaningful discussion about the body shape of O. megalodon It would require the discovery of at least one complete, or nearly complete, skeleton of the species in the fossil record,” Jake Wood, Shimada’s master’s student, said in a press release.

“Despite the important scientific advance of our new study, the fact that we still do not know exactly how O. megalodon Looking keeps our imagination alive,” Shimada said. “An ongoing mystery like this makes paleontology, the study of prehistoric life, a fascinating and exciting field of science.”

What was the megalodon like?

Previous studies estimated that megalodon reached lengths of 50 to 65 feet (15 to 20 meters). Most of the evidence associated with the shark and its supposed size consists of fossilized teeth and vertebrae. Finding entire shark skeletons is very rare because they are made largely of cartilage, not bone. As a result, the remains of dead sharks decompose in most cases, with the exception of teeth.

Although it seems unlikely that the megalodon would suffer defeat, it met an unexpected end due to global cooling during the Pliocene, about 3 million years ago. greater competition of the great white sharks. Climate change likely caused habitat loss and shook up the food chain, leading to the extinction of the megalodon.

Most people are probably grateful that the megalodon now only swims on movie screens and not in real life, but it might finally be time to alter our idea of ​​what the predator of the past was really like.

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