Many of the animals that once roamed the Earth no longer exist. Although in some cases it is very sad, in other cases it is only for the best. It is unlikely that you would be happy to meet one of the ten most terrible extinct animals.
10. There is no Titanoboa and there has never been a snake on this planet bigger than the gigantic Titanoboa cerrejonensis. This monster lived in the Paleocene epoch, having chosen the muddy rivers of the humid tropical forests in the territory of modern Colombia. According to paleontologists, titanoboa reached 12-13 meters in length and weighed about 1.1 tons. She could easily have a bite with a giant crocodile, which at that time reached, on average, 5 meters in length and weighed 400 kilograms. But Titanoboa’s favorite food was fish. There were no people yet.
9. Sarcosuchus Although technically sarcosuchus (aka supercroc or crocodylomorph) was not a crocodile, it was its distant relative from the family of pholidosaurids. About 110-120 million years ago, sarcosuchus lived on the territory of modern Africa and South America. A complete skeleton of a sarcosuchus has not yet been found, but according to the most modest assumptions, this reptile was half as long and 3 times heavier than the largest of modern crocodiles. According to paleontologists, it was an impressive 12-meter, 7-ton reptile that fed on fish and other aquatic life, and also did not disdain small dinosaurs, setting up an ambush near the shore. The body of the supercroc itself was protected from bites by a layer of bone scales.
8. Do Meganevra like dragonflies? Then, perhaps, you will be touched by looking at the reconstruction of a giant dragonfly that lived about 300 million years ago, during the Carboniferous period. The biggest difference between the modern dragonfly and the dragonfly of the past was their size. With a half-meter wingspan, it was one of the largest insects that had ever lived on Earth. In those days, Meganevra ruled the sky. She hunted both insects and larger creatures such as frogs and newts. Why are giant dragonflies not found now? At the beginning of the last century, scientists suggested that the atmosphere of the Carboniferous period contained more oxygen than the modern one. Simply put, these days meganevra would simply suffocate.
7. Arthropleura Just imagine how this huge centipede crawls on the bed at night … The body of the arthropleura was flat and consisted of a number of segments that went for each other. Thirty pairs of legs carried the weight of a 50-kilogram body. The body length of the arthropleura could reach 2.6 meters, and the weight was 50 kg. Among all the invertebrate species that have ever existed, arthropleura was the largest. What this creature ate is an open question. Presumably – plant food, but it may have been omnivorous.
6. Megalodon This extinct species of giant shark lived 2.8-1.5 million years ago. It is believed that megalodon was similar to the modern great white shark, and its name means “big tooth”. The largest megalodon teeth ever discovered had a length of more than 18 centimeters. While great white sharks can reach 6 meters in length and weigh up to 3175 kg, Megalodon, according to various estimates, reached 15-18 meters in length and weighed up to 47 tons. And the bite force in the largest individuals was 10.8 tons. Megalodon was the largest shark in the world and became extinct only 2.6 million years ago. During his lifetime, this underwater monster ate very large animals, such as giant sea turtles and whales.
5. Gorgonops Even before the appearance of dinosaurs on our planet there were many terrifying prehistoric creatures. A great example is gorgonops. This is an animal that lived 260 million years ago. Gorgonops was about 4 meters long and weighed about 450 kilograms. Perhaps this creature was warm-blooded, which is one of the most interesting facts about it. This means that the gorgonops’ body could have been covered with a layer of fur. According to scientists, gorgonops had a “saber-toothed” type of dental system, and were an analogue of a saber-toothed cat for their time.
4. Epicyon Looking at the reconstruction of this huge prehistoric animal that lived about 15 million years ago, it’s hard to say: “Good doggie!” If only because this doggie could easily have dinner with you. Large epicions weighed 100-135 kilograms, and had very powerful jaws, for which they received the nickname “bone crushers”.
3. The Pulmonoscorpion Giant centipede was already on the list of extinct prehistoric monsters. Meet the giant scorpion known as Pulmonoscorpius (“breathing scorpion”). It lived 336 million years ago on the territory of modern Scotland. This scorpion king reached 70 centimeters in length (according to other sources, it grew up to a meter), while the largest modern scorpions grow up to 20 centimeters. The diet of Pulmonoscorpius is not directly known, but it is likely that they preyed on smaller arthropods and small quadrupeds. Now a giant arthropod would simply not have enough oxygen to grow to such a size and even more comfortable to feel.
2. Arctodus Bulldog bears (Arctodus) is an extinct species that lived in North America during the Pleistocene period, about 1.8 million years ago. At that time, this bear may have been the largest meat-eating land mammal. In the standing position, the arctode reaches a height of 3.5 meters and weighs more than one ton. The size of these bears is about 50 percent larger than that of the largest polar bears recorded in history.
1. Spinosaurus is a monster bigger than Tyrannosaurus rex, which could run and swim, and had a long crocodile mouth. It’s all about (fortunately) the extinct spinosaurus, the largest predatory dinosaur on Earth! In the Middle Cretaceous period, about 93-100 million years ago, spinosaurs lived in what is now Egypt, Morocco and the Republic of Niger. It is estimated that the skull of spinosaurus was about one and a half meters in length, and the length of its body reached 12-16 meters. The body weight, presumably, reached 12 tons. I don’t know about you, dear readers, but I am glad that I will never encounter this terrible extinct animal!