Scientists have revealed when the massive Megalodon went extinct, at least became less prominent. The date, around 2.6 million years ago.
The giant shark, about 18 metres (60ft) in length once graced Earth’s oceans, and was one of the top prehistoric predators to have ever lived. To get this date, researchers looked at Baleen Whales, a once meaty snack for the Megalodon. Around this time period, there’s an increase in the whale’s population, suggesting that their main predator starting disappearing from the oceans.
The research team used a method called Optimal Linear Estimation (OLE) on 42 Megalodon fossils to come up with the suggested date. The method ran 10,000 simulations of the fossils, each coming up with a date, the team examined the spacing between the dates to reveal the end date.
Although this dating technique is tricky, this time period seems legit enough, as most Megalodon fossils date to the Miocene period (15.9 – 11.6 million years ago) and the Pliocene epoch (5.3 – 2.6 million years ago).
Of course, we all know the theories that Megalodon still exists, but if the creature did, researchers are pretty sure we would know it by now (even though most of the world’s oceans are still to be explored), but it’s likely the gigantic shark is still around.
One thing’s for sure though, if it did still exist, we would definitely need bigger boats.
Check out more about this on Live Science.