Drago Posted September 22, 2009 #1 Share Posted September 22, 2009 Okay, so bear with me. Megalodon, for those not familiar with current fads, was a massive shark - most scientists place it at or exceeding fifty feet in length at full growth - that existed until roughly around two and a half million years ago, about the end of the Pliocene epoch. For all intents and purposes, Megalodon is imagined by most people, scientists included, as being a massively up-scaled Great White Shark. It was believed to be a coastal predator, meaning it actively hunted prey in relatively shallow temperate or tropical water close to coastlines. This is believed to have been their downfall; As prey slowly evolved into smaller forms, Megalodon's food sources slowly vanished. It couldn't eat enough of the new smaller prey items to make it worthwhile, and prey that was large enough to sustain them began to move towards the poles, living in colder water that Megalodon couldn't survive in. Two and a half million years later, in 1997, along comes Steve Alten and his Meg series of novels about Megalodons that survived by living in the hot water at the bottom of massive ocean trenches. While entertaining in the same vein as the Godzilla movies, much like Godzilla, there were serious flaws with this idea that were overlooked in the name of entertainment. More power to Steve Alten, I don't knock the guy at all for writing an entertaining book. Even if it was predictable in the extreme. So was Godzilla, and it's a classic. ANYWAY. Enough literary opinion. After Alten released Meg, there was a sudden surge of interest among cryptid fans as to what happened to Megalodon. It became a fad to posit that Megalodon might have survived in the same way that the Meg in Alten's novel did. Nevermind it wasn't meant to be a scientifically feasible explanation, but just one that set up a story of fiction. Fast forward to today, where the Megalodon is, somehow, a 'well known cryptid'. My question is this: How the crap is Meg considered a cryptid? There are no contemporary reports of massive sharks. No weird remains of giant fifty foot sharks. We don't even have blurry photos and bad home movies. There is nothing. Not a shred of even the most questionable evidence that places Megalodon in today's oceans. Just a series of sci-fi books. How do we go from that to trying to prove Megalodon still exists? Megalodon doesn't even have the luxury of questionable eyewitness accounts. There was, is, and remains no one that claims to have seen Megalodon in contemporary oceans. Yet somehow it keeps coming up in cryptozoological discussion. Why? It was big, it was mean, it was deadly. It's impressive, yes. But why has 'cryptozoology' chosen to champion the cause of a long-extinct ocean predator when there has never been any kind of indication they survived past the end of the Pliocene? Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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