Jakarta, CNBC Indonesia – After Meg 2: The Trench was released, the existence of Megalodon became a concern.
Then the question arises, is it true that Megalodon or the extinct giant shark species still exist on Earth?
Later, rumors of Megalodon’s existence were spread by a number of videos on TikTok and YouTube. However, a doctoral student at Swansea University, Jack Cooper, confirmed that the animal was extinct.
LiveScience noted that the animal with the scientific name Otodus Megalodon once lived in the oceans 20 million to 3.6 million years ago. Megalodon was up to 18 meters long and had teeth three times the size of the great white shark.
“Any claim that Megalodon potentially existed in unexplored areas of the ocean is nonsense based on credible evidence,” Cooper told LiveSciencequoted on Wednesday (16/8/2023).
One reason is that the presence of Megalodon will change the food chain. The giant shark is the highest apex predator in the food web in the oceans.
If Megalodon is still alive, the whale population will be impacted. According to him, there are still many whales because the predators that prey on them have become extinct.
“The extinction of Megalodon had cascading consequences. Whales, one of its main prey, became more numerous,” he explained.
He continued, some of today’s largest marine mammals, such as the blue whale, only evolved after Megalodon became extinct. Thus, the modern food web was partly formed because the Megalodon was gone.
Currently, scientists are also studying a number of the deepest and most mysterious ocean areas that have yet to be mapped. Included among these is the Mariana Trench with a depth of 10,935 meters.
The possibility that Megalodon lived there was also denied by Cooper. He assessed that the animal would not be able to survive in an environment where there were not many prey.
This is because the Mariana Trench is a place where small creatures live. Meanwhile, Megalodon needed large prey.
“We found marine sharks in the Mariana Trench and none came close to a giant 20 meters in size. Because the Megalodon probably searched for large prey, small animals were not an appropriate food source,” he said.