Welcome Fossil Fans to August, the heat of which leads people to beaches in droves, into waters that once were patrolled by the fearsome foursome offered up in our newest crates.
Carcharocles megalodon, aka Megalodon, the largest known predatory shark, may have reached lengths of 50' and over 20 tons (!). It ate... whales! It likely gave birth to a single, 11' long, 500 lb "baby" shark. How'd the baby get so big? It ate its siblings in the womb, like some sharks do today! Megalodon lived after the dinosaurs, during the Age of Mammals, from 30 to 3 million years ago, which is probably a good thing for our Cretaceous trio below!
Tylosaurus proriger, a 50' long marine reptile whose closest living relative is the Komodo Dragon. Fast, powerful, and armed with 6 rows of strongly recurved teeth (4 rows on top!), this Cretaceous killer wasn't the sole challenger to King of the Kansas Cretaceous Seas, not by a long shot!
Xiphactinus audax, the "Bulldog Fish", was a 20' long bony fish with the demonstrated ability to swallow fish over 6' long as evidenced by fossils from Kansas. Its toothy maw is the stuff of nightmares and was the last sight for many a sea-going beast.
Cretoxyrhina, the "Ginsu Shark", exceeded the size of the largest Great White Sharks today. Not only was its bite massive, equipped with teeth that "sliced and diced", but it was also one of the fastest sharks ever known, capable of exceeding 40 mph! It had a blunt nose (despite being named "sharp-nosed" by its discoverer) which, when combined with its speed and size, allowed it to ram-stun prey, making dispatching its dinner even easier.
We look forward to sharing more details on these, and other, Marine Marauders throughout the month of August.
Thank you kindly!