Fossil hunters have recovered the remains of an ancient sperm whale that boasted one of the largest bites of any predator that ever lived. The beast, named Leviathan melvillei after the author of Moby Dick, Herman Melville, had a skull 3 metres long with teeth in its upper and lower jaws that grew to an extraordinary 36cm long. Remains of the whale, including large fragments of its skull, lower jaw and teeth, were found in the sands of the Pisco-Ica desert on the south coast of Peru in , but details of the discovery have only now been released. The extinct whale is thought to have lived between 12m and 13m years ago and was probably a top predator alongside the metre-long giant shark, Carcharocles megalodon , using its huge jaws to capture and kill other marine creatures, such as smaller baleen whales. The team, which included researchers from Utrecht University in the Netherlands and the natural history museums of Rotterdam, Pisa, Lima and Brussels, believe the whale was between The remains were found in a region of the Pisco-Ica desert that was a shallow lagoon when the whale was alive.
Fossilised tooth of gigantic ‘killer’ whale found in Australia
Forgot your password? Or sign in with one of these services. By ilzho, January 19, in Fossil ID. I remember as a kid I found these and all the adults on the bus as everyone is showing off their finds gave me ugly looks, hahaha. Also this pdf.
Macropredatory sperm whales
The largest of them, Physeter macrocephalus , is a deep diver that can grow 18 meters 59 feet long. The other two, Kogia breviceps and Kogia sima , are much smaller at 2. Sperm whales in the fossil record, however, were a diverse array of different forms. Described in , Ontocetus oxymycterus is a large but incomplete fossil sperm whale specimen unearthed in the middle Miocene Monterey Formation along sea cliffs near the original Santa Barbara Lighthouse in Santa Barbara County, California. The whale was placed in the genus Ontocetus based on similarities with another sperm whale called Ontocetus emmonsi.
A huge, five-million-year-old whale tooth has been discovered on an Australian beach, providing the first evidence of the now extinct killer sperm whale outside the Americas. Sydney: A huge, five-million-year-old whale tooth has been discovered on an Australian beach, providing the first evidence of the now extinct killer sperm whale outside the Americas. The centimetre-long inch fossilised tooth, which is larger than that of a Tyrannosaurus rex, was found by a fossil enthusiast at Beaumaris Bay near Melbourne in February. The museum said the tooth, which dates from the Pliocene epoch of some five million years ago, was not only larger than those of a living sperm whale but also of a Tyrannosaurus rex. So, the fossil record reveals the living species to in fact be the exception to the rule, the oddball of the sperm whale family.