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Megalodon was an ancient shark that may have been 40 feet (12 m) long or even longer. (There are a few scientists who estimate that it could have been up to 50 or 100 feet (15 or 31 m) long!) This is at least two or three times as long as the Great White Shark, but this is only an estimate made from many fossilized teeth and a few fossilized vertebrae that have been found. These giant teeth are the size of a person's hand! No other parts of this ancient shark have been found, so we can only guess what it looked like. Since Megalodon's teeth are very similar to the teeth of the Great White Shark (but bigger), it is thought that Megalodon may have looked like a huge version of the Great White Shark.

Teeth: Megalodon's teeth were up to 6.5 inches (17 cm) long. Like most sharks, Megalodon's teeth were probably located in rows which rotated into use as they were needed. Most sharks have about 5 rows of teeth at any time. The front set does most of the work. The first two rows are used for obtaining prey, the other rows rotate into place as they are needed. As teeth are lost, broken, or worn down, they are replaced by new teeth. Megalodon may had hundreds of teeth at one time. They did not chew their food like we do, but gulped it down whole in very large chunks.

When Megalodon Lived: Megalodon lived from roughly 25 to 1.6 million years ago, during the Miocene and Pliocene epochs.

Diet: Megalodon's diet probably consisted mostly of whales.

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