Megalodon extinct or not?

Megalodon (Carcharodes megalodon) is the largest shark that ever lived, it has been suggested that the extinction event for this species occurred 15.9-2.6Ma, during the middle Miocene to the Pliocene.

This study aimed to analyse fossils to determine when megalodon became extinct. They looked at 42 reliable fossil records.


  • An estimated extinction time of 3.5-2.6Ma.
  • Roughly 50% of the simulations suggested the extinction occurred before 2.6Ma,  whereas roughly 50% also occurred between 2.6-0.1Ma. In 0.06% of the simulations the extinction event was predicted to be after the present day and in 1.5% of the simulations it was predicted to be after 0.1Ma.


  • This study suggests that Megalodon became extinct around the Pliocene/Pleistocene boundary which was around 2.6Ma
  • They also reject claims that Megalodon exists today because more than 10,000 of the simulations suggested that the extinction occurred before the present day.


Pimiento, Catalina, and Christopher F. Clements. “When Did Carcharocles megalodon Become Extinct? A New Analysis of the Fossil Record.” PloS one9.10 (2014): e111086.

Please see for the online article

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I have a degree in Zoology and I am currently a PhD student at The University of Nottingham where I am researching Elephant Endotheliotropic Herpesvirus 1

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