It is possible to learn a great deal about a fossilized animal’s life history, behavior, evolution, and extinction from its diet. Many factors, notably the poor preservation of chemical food indicators in organic material, make it difficult to analyze the nutrition of live animals over millions of years. Researchers from all across the world used cutting-edge equipment to study Otodus megalodon, the largest shark ever discovered.
Sharks like Otodus megalodon, commonly known as the megalodon, thrived between 23 million years ago and 3.6 million years ago in oceans throughout the globe and may have reached 20 meters in length. The world’s largest great white sharks, on the other hand, are only six meters long. Nutrition and dietary competition have been regarded as the most crucial factors in Megalodon’s giddiness and ultimate extinction.
This new technique enables researchers to assess an organism’s trophic status, which indicates how far up the food chain it eats. For this research, scientists looked at zinc stable isotope concentrations in the teeth of megalodon, great white sharks, as well as other species. Isotope technology that uses zinc provides a fresh perspective on history. It is possible to utilize zinc isotopes to examine the diet and nutritional ecology of ancient species, such as our own ancestors, that have been extinct for millions of years.
The findings of the study
Findings show that megalodon and its precursor were both voracious apex predators that ate a lot. A comparison of the zinc isotope ratios in North Carolina’s Early Pliocene shark fangs shows that the first great white sharks as well as megalodons were on about the same trophic level. It’s possible that the prey of both sharks is similar, according to the studies. In spite of the need for more investigation, it appears that megalodon and Early Pliocene great whites fought for food.
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