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The prehistoric megalodon was the largest shark species ever, reaching almost 60 feet long — but then went extinct 3.6 million years ago.

In the Earth’s oceans, there once lurked a prehistoric creature so massive and deadly that the thought of it continues to inspire fear to this very day. We now know it as the megalodon, history’s biggest shark that measured about 60 feet long and weighed approximately 50 tons.

Aside from its frightening size, the megalodon also boasted seven-inch teeth and a bite strong enough to crush a car. In addition, it could swim up to 16.5 feet per second — about twice the speed of a great white shark — making it the undeniable apex predator of the ancient oceans for millions of years.

Despite this, the megalodon went extinct around 3.6 million years ago — and we still don’t know why. How could one of the world’s largest creatures just vanish? Especially one that didn’t have any predators of its own?

There are countless theories, but nobody has been able to fully explain why one of the ocean’s deadliest beasts disappeared. But once you learn more about the megalodon, you’ll probably be glad that this shark is gone.

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