MEGALODON VS LEVIATHAN – Who would win between this two legendary creatures?
Who Would Win a Fight Between this two legendary creatures: Megalodon and Leviathan The megalodon, which went extinct millions of years ago, was the largest shark ever documented and one of the largest fish on record. The scientific name, Carcharocles megalodon, means “giant tooth.” And for good reason: Its massive teeth give scientists major clues about what the creature was like and when it died off. In today’s oceans, killer whales hunt other species of whales, working in packs to take down their much bigger prey. But living whales have it easy. Those that swam off the coast of Peru around 12 million years ago were hunted by a far bigger predator, a recently discovered animal with a very appropriate name: Leviathan. Named after the Biblical sea monster and the author of Moby, was a giant sperm whale that has just been discovered by Belgian scientist Olivier Lambert. Size The megalodon was a gigantic creature, but maybe not as big as you think. There are a lot of arguments in the scientific community about the animal’s actual size. Going solely by the size of the teeth, some believe that the fish could grow up to 60 feet long, while others think that about 80 feet long. Still others think it was much smaller. The largest megalodon tooth measures around 7 inches in length, which is almost three times longer than those of great white sharks. That giant size led ancient peoples to theorize about the creatures’ origins. A prehistoric Leviathan that represented a more savage Moby Dick once hunted smaller whales around 12 million or 13 million years ago, researchers say. Fossils of the whale’s skull and foot-long teeth found in Peru suggest the monstrous sperm whales ranged in size from almost 43 feet to 59 feet, or longer than a school bus. Just the skull alone reaches a length of almost 10 feet. The ancient sperm whale’s killer arsenal included 14-inch long teeth resembling elephant tusks that allowed it to rip and tear its prey, unlike modern sperm whales that lack functional teeth in their upper jaws and rely upon suction to grab giant squid. Based on the size of teeth, robustness of jaws and size of temporal fossa, the bite of Leviathan must have been powerful, and he was likely able to tear pieces of meat from its prey like the modern killer whale. In fact, the specimen, named Leviathan, had the largest known bite of any vertebrate creature with four limbs. Diet The megalodon was a top-of-the-food-chain predator. It fed on other big marine mammals, like whales and dolphins. It may have even eaten other sharks. Researchers think the megalodon would first attack the flipper and tails of the mammals to prevent them from swimming away, then go in for the kill. The megalodon’s 276 serrated teeth were the perfect tool for ripping flesh. These sharks also had a ferocious bite. While humans have been measured to have a bite force of around 1,317 newtons, researchers have estimated that the megalodon had a bite of between 108,514 and 182,201 newtons. Leviathan was at the very top of the food chain and it must have needed a lot of food. While modern sperm whales mainly eat squid, Leviathan used its fearsome teeth to kill its own kind the giant baleen whales. At the same point in prehistory, baleen whales started becoming much bigger and they were certainly the most common large animals in the area that Leviathan lived in. It’s perhaps no coincidence that the biggest shark in history – the mighty Megalodon also appeared at the same time in the same part of the world. During the mid-Miocene epoch, the territory of these two behemoths briefly overlapped, meaning they inevitably strayed into each other’s waters, either accidentally or on purpose. Who wins in a head-to-head battle between Leviathan and Megalodon? In the Near Corner: Leviathan, the Giant Sperm Whale Advantages Aside from its almost impenetrable bulk, Leviathan had two major things going for it. First, this prehistoric whale’s teeth were even longer and thicker than those of Megalodon, some of them measuring well over a foot long; in fact, they’re the longest identified teeth in the animal kingdom, mammal, bird, fish or reptile. Second, as a warm-blooded mammal, Leviathan presumably possessed a bigger brain than any plus-sized sharks or fish in its habitat and thus would have been quicker to react in close-quarter, fin-to-fin combat. Disadvantages Enormous size is a mixed blessing: sure, Leviathan’s sheer bulk would have intimidated would-be predators, but it also would have presented many more acres of warm flesh to an especially hungry Megalodon. Not the sleekest of whales, Leviathan couldn’t have fishtailed it away from attackers with any great speed nor would it have been inclined to do so, since it was presumably the apex predator of its particular patch of ocean, incursions by the unfamiliar Megalodon aside. In the Far Corner: Megalodon, the Monster Shark Advantages Picture a Great White Shark scaled up by a factor of 10, and you’ll get some idea what a fearsome killing machine Megalodon was. By some calculations, Megalodon wielded the most powerful bite of any animal that ever lived, and it had an unusual talent for shearing off its prey’s tough, cartilaginous fins, then zooming in for the kill once its adversary had been rendered immobile in the water. Disadvantages As dangerous as Megalodon’s teeth were, about seven inches long fully grown they were no match for the even bigger, foot-long choppers of Leviathan. Also, as a cold-blooded shark rather than a warm-blooded mammal, Megalodon possessed a comparably smaller, more primitive brain, and was presumably less capable of thinking its way out of a tough spot, instead acting entirely on instinct. Fight! It is not important to focus on who blundered into whose territory; let’s just say that a hungry Megalodon and an equally famished Leviathan have suddenly found themselves snout-to-snout in the deep waters off the coast of Peru. The two undersea behemoths accelerate toward each other and collide with the force of two overloaded freight trains. The somewhat sleeker, faster, and more muscular Megalodon pokes, wriggles and dives around Leviathan, nipping yard-long chunks out of its dorsal and tail fins but not managing to land that one killer blow. The slightly less maneuverable Leviathan appears to be doomed, until its superior mammalian brain instinctively calculates the proper trajectories and it wheels around suddenly and charges, mouth agape. And the Winner Is… Leviathan! Unable to hobble its cetacean adversary sufficiently to take a fatal chunk out of its soft underbelly, Megalodon is pretty much out of ideas—but its primitive shark brain won’t allow it to retreat to a safe distance, or abandon the bleeding Leviathan for a more tractable meal. Leviathan, though badly wounded, chomps down on its adversary’s back with the full force of its enormous jaws, crushing the giant shark’s cartilaginous spine and rendering the broken Megalodon as inoffensive as a boneless jellyfish. Even as it continues to spew blood from its own wounds, Leviathan chows down on its opponent, sufficiently sated so as not to have to hunt again for three or four days.