When it comes to ocean-bound apex predators, two of the most impressive to date are the mighty Megalodon and the massive Blue Whale.
Although both are separated by around 3.4 million years (the time when Megalodon is thought to have gone extinct), more curious minds wonder what a matchup between the two would look like.
To answer the question of which creature is truly the APEX PREDATOR of the ocean, we take a closer look at the defensive and offensive attributes of these behemoths, giving you an idea of how a battle royale between the two would play out.
Megalodon Vs Blue Whale
Key factors to consider in a fight between these legends of the deep
1. Sheer Size
There is a reason why boxing, wrestling, and UFC fighters compete in weight classes. Simply put, size can (in many cases) be highly advantageous in a physical altercation. The same can be said of a fight between a Megalodon and a Blue Whale.
The Megalodon weighs in at upwards of 50-70 tons, measuring a span of up to 60-70 feet in length. By contrast, the Blue Whale tips the scale at around 100-110 tons and tops lengths of up to 100 feet.
Who Wins on Size?
It’s pretty obvious that the Blue Whale is the bigger apex predator in this fight. While that can in many ways be advantageous, water is tough to move quickly through, and the smaller Megalodon size profile may aid in faster more agile attacks and defensive movements.
2. Bite Force, Teeth, and Jaw Size
You think your friend Todd has a big mouth? Wait till you get the measurements of these beasts. It is believed that Megalodon’s mouth was between 9-11ft in width. But size isn’t the only factor in contention here. Megalodon’s jaw was lined with 276 razor-sharp serrated teeth evolutionarily designed to rip and tear through flesh. Add to that a bite force of nearly 108,514 and 182,201 Newtons (N) and you’d be best advised to stay away from the ‘business end’ of this apex predator.
On the flip side, we have the Blue Whale, which belongs to a group of whales called ‘Baleen Whales’. Baleen whales do not have teeth at all. Alternatively, they have a baleen sieve (plates of bone) lined with bristles through which small schools of fish and plankton are filtered.
The size of the Blue Whale’s mouth, however, is quite impressive, large enough to hold up to 100 tons of water and food when full. One such advantage may be the whale’s ability to open its jar to nearly a 90-degree angle. But that’s where the music stops for the Blue Whale, with a bite force of only 19,000 PSI it is significantly less forceful than its adversary in this battle.
Who Wins on Bite Force, Teeth, and Jaw Size?
While the Blue Whale has the biggest mouth, it is the Megalodon’s which is outfitted for battle. Whereas the Blue Whale doesn’t even have teeth, the Megalodon sports serrated daggers ready to lock down on prey.
Senses are vitally important in any animal fight, giving each creature situational awareness, and visual, auditory, physical, and other inputs needed to react defensively or offensively.
As for the Megalodon, its senses were believed to have been highly evolved, making it a killer apex predator capable of hunting down its prey with precision and agility. It is believed that this beast had an acute smell, impressive vision (especially in low light scenarios), and strong hearing.
The Blue Whale, by contrast, has no or little sense of smell, and can see clearly up to about 35 feet underwater. They do, however, have great hearing, and the ability to call for other whales from miles away.
Who Wins on the Senses Front?
This one is a bit of a toss-up. As for hearing, it’s a tie with a slight edge to the Blue Whale. Vision is close, but the edge goes to the Megalodon. Smell goes to the Megalodon, giving it the edge on hunting down a Blue Whale from afar.
However, whales are sometimes known to travel in packs (pods) and to call for aid and assistance. The Blue Whale’s ability to call for help from miles away may be a wild card here. Question is, will their buddies be close enough to join in the fight and even the odds before the Megalodon has its way?
4. Speed and Movement Type
Like Ali always said, ‘float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.’
Here the Megalodon can reach speeds of up to 11mph. Decent, but by no means impressive. On the other hand, the Blue Whale generally floats along at just 5mph, BUT, it is capable of short bursts of up to 20mph (perhaps enough time to outmaneuver a Megalodon?).
As for agility, the Megalodon moves via undulating side to side motions, engaging the tail for propulsion. This movement enables the shark to quickly change direction at a moment’s notice.
The Blue Whale, by contrast, uses its massive flipper for propulsion and fins to steer.
Who Wins On Speed And Movement?
The Megalodon shark is certainly more agile and faster over long periods of time. Whereas the Blue Whale can outrun the Megalodon, but for how long? Its short bursts of 20mph speeds might not be enough. And with the Megalodon’s highly tuned sensory perception, there might not be anywhere for a Blue Whale to hide.
Megalodon vs Blue Whale: Battle of the Beasts Exposed
Unfortunately (or fortunately) we’ll never truly know for sure which of these Apex ocean-dwellers would win. However, it seems pretty obvious that the odds are stacked in the favor of the ferocious (and now extinct) Megalodon Shark.