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The Largest Animals That Ever Lived on Earth

By-Omkar singh,Owner Science Relief

Some of the largest prehistoric animals....

I recently read about a large rodent fossil that was discovered in 2008 and it sparked my interest in large prehistoric animals. I was eager to learn more about some of the largest critters to ever roam the earth, and I was not disappointed. I did some research and decided to create a lens! Here you will find some information about the largest snake fossil ever found, an enormous frog, a gigantic kangaroo, and more. I have also provided links for more information on each beast and to some great sites on prehistoric animals and dinosaurs.

The Biggest Snake That Ever Lived

Giant Boid Snake (Titanoboa cerrejonensis)

Photo: Kenneth KryskoIf you like snakes, you will love this one....if not, prepare to be creeped out! The fossil of the largest snake to ever live was discovered in a mine located in Columbia. The fossils indicate that this snake was 42 feet (13 meters) long and weighed 2500 pounds (1250 kg)!!! That is roughly the length of a school bus and the weight of a VW Beetle. The photo at right shows a fossilized vertebra compared to the green anaconda.

This prehistoric reptile is believed to have been a massive anaconda-like beast that slithered through tropical rainforests 60 million years ago and fed on primitive crocodiles. It would have suffocated its prey with a vice strong enough to crush an old car!

Where is COLUMBIA?
What is a REPTILE?
More information on this snake!


Christopher Mattison
1426304285National Geographic Readers: Snakes! 
Melissa Stewart
Seymour Simon
069113295XThe New Encyclopedia of Snakes 
Christopher Mattison

The Boid Snake - Artists rendering compared to human  

Giant Prehistoric Ground Marsupial

Protemnon anak

This gigantic kangaroo-like marsupial "hippo" lived on the island Tasmania. This beast weighed 1,000 pounds (500 kg)! That's half a ton! Good thing these giants were herbivores.New data suggests they went extinct around 41,000 years ago.

The largest species of kangaroo alive today, the red kangaroo, can weigh up to 200 pounds. This animal would be dwarfed by the prehistoric giant!

What is a MARSUPIAL?
Where is TASMANIA?
What is a HERBIVORE?
More information on this beast!

The largest mammal that ever lived.....

Is the beautiful Blue Whale!

The largest rodent on earth is the Capybara

The largest marsupial on earth is the Red Kangaroo

Biggest Rodent That Ever Lived

Josephoartigasia monesi

Here it is, the largest rodent fossil to ever be discovered! This enormous rat weighed ONE TON, that's 2000 pounds (1000 kg)!! The skull of this prehistoric critter was found in Uruguay and measures 21 inches (53 centimeters) long. That would make this prehistoric beast about the size of a bull. The photo at right shows the skull size compared to a modern-day rat.

What is a RODENT?
Where is URUGUAY?
More information on this critter!

Size of the prehistoric rodent compared to man and the capybara! 

Living Prehistoric Animals

Giant Prehistoric Shark


These huge prehistoric sharks first appeared in the earth's waters about 16 million years ago. This beast may have grown to lengths over 50 feet (16 meters) and could have weighed up to 30 times MORE than the great white shark! That's 126,000 pounds (63,000 kg)!!!

The photo at right shows a single Megalodon tooth. The bite of this gigantic shark was strong enough to crush a car and was much stronger than the bite of Tyrannosaurus rex!

The Great White Shark.
The Tyrannosaurus Rex
More information about Megalodon


You can see the massiveness of Megalodon when compared to a GW shark and a human!

Enormous Monster Whale

I just read an article about a monstrous whale that was discovered back in 2010. The fossils were discovered by Klaas Post in Peru's Ice desert. This was not only a large whale, it was also believed to have shared the ancient oceans with none other than the Megalodon shark! Although they may have co-existed, scientists don't think these two monsters would have attacked each other, but perhaps one might attack the young of another.

The bones of this large whale have been dated to 12 or 13 million years ago and in honor of Herman Melville's Moby Dick it has been named Leviathan melvillei. It is estimated that this whale would have been between 13 and 18 meters (43 to 59 feet) long. Its skull is three meters (9.8 feet) long. Its teeth are the largest predatory teeth every found at 36 cm (14 inches) long and 12 cm (5 inches) wide. Quite an interesting find!

Source: Ancient monster whale more fearsome than Moby Dick via New Scientist.

Check out these amazing prehistoric animal sites for more information:

Prehistoric Animals, Dinosaurs - National Geographic
Learn all you wanted to know about prehistoric animals and dinosaurs with pictures, videos, photos, facts, and news from National Geographic.
Prehistoric Animals--Quaternary Period
Prehistoric animals from Quaternary period Wooly Mammoth, Mastodon, Columbian Mammoth, Saber Tooth Cat, American Lion, Coelodonta, Canis lupus, Wooly Rhino,
Prehistoric Mammals - A Complete, A to Z List of Prehistoric Mammals
Profiles of the early, prehistoric mammals that coexisted with the dinosaurs, as well as the saber-toothed cats, woolly mammoths, giant sloths, and other mammalian megafauna that succeeded them.
Ice Age Mammals
During the last Ice Age, there were many large, interesting mammals, like the saber-toothed cats, giant ground sloths, woolly rhino, mastodons, and mammoths. These animals have long since gone extinct and are known mostly from fossils, from frozen, mummified carcasses, and even from ancient cave....
Prehistoric mammal - Wikipedia
Prehistoric mammals are groups of mammals that lived before humans developed writing. 164 million years ago, in the Jurassic period, Castorocauda.
Extinct Birds
Extinct Birds from the Jurassic period and later.
Largest organisms - Wikipedia
A summary of the largest organisms alive today, and some information about the largest organisms to ever live.

The Largest Frog That Ever Lived

The bad-tempered Beelzebufo or "devil frog"

Illustration by Luci Betti-NashThis enormous prehistoric frog once hopped about Madagascararound 70-million-years-ago and is believed to be the largest frog that ever lived. Called the Beelzebufo or "devil frog." These gigantic herps were the size of a beach ball, roughly 16 inches (41 cm) high and weighing about 10 pounds (4.5 kg)!! Wonder what sounds it made? :)

It is believed that the devil frog probably had a very bad attitude --- given its closest living relatives, which are known to grab onto anything that moves, even humans! The beelzebufo had a strong jaw and protective shield which may have enabled it to feast upon baby dinosaurs.

What is a HERP?
More information on devil frogs!

Bizarre Prehistoric Animals Video

This video is really well-done and shows a wide variety of bizarre prehistoric life!

The Largest Arthropod That Ever Lived

Jaekelopterus rhenaniae

Imagine a giant crayfish-like creepy-crawler that was much longer than you!! This enormousarthropod lived 390-million-years-ago and was roughly the size of a large crocodile. Scientists estimate that it was about 8.2 feet (2.5 m) long, based on the 18-inch (46 cm) fossil claw that was found in Germany. This sea scorpion likely inhabited coastal swamp waters where it was probably the top predator around --- slicing up fish and even its own kind, as arthropods are known to do.

What is an ARTHROPOD?
Where is GERMANY?
More information about this giant sea scorpion!

Why were prehistoric critters so big?!

Well, not all prehistoric animals were big. We just have a tendency to pay more attention to the massive animals.

It's thought that a larger size made animals less likely to be eaten by predators.

At a cost though. A larger body needs more food to sustain it, hence, large prehistoric animals were more susceptible to extinction.

Huge Prehistoric Desert-Dwelling Penguins

Icadyptes salasi

Thirty-five million years ago, penguins the size of humans could be found wandering a desert in Peru. This penguin did not need ice to survive! These birds reached heights of 5-feet (1.5 m). The photo at right shows this giant as compared with another prehistoric penguin, and with Peru's only living penguin, the Peruvian penguin.

Where is PERU?
More on Peruvian penguins
More information on this giant penguin!

Prehistoric giant penguin skull (top) as compared to Peruvian penguin skull (bottom).

3-Foot Giant Shrimp

A fossil discovery in Morocco revealed that this gigantic early crustacean lived almost 30 million years longer than previously thought. The specimens found are the largest yet discovered of its kind and suggest that these shrimp-like beasts dominated pre-dinosaur seas. These shrimp-like creatures were the early off-shoot of modern crustaceans called anomalocaridids.

Just how large were these beasts? The recent fossils reveal that they could grow to lengths of 3.3 feet (1 meter)!!! Just one would have made enough shrimp scampi to feed an army for a month. Click here to read the full National Geographic article!

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What is your favorite prehistoric animal on this page?

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Posted by Omkarr singh on Thursday, January 03, 2013. Filed under , , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0

1 comments for The Largest Animals That Ever Lived on Earth

  1. It says the Jaekelopterus rhenaniae was about 8.2 feet long and was roughly the size of a large crocodile. 8.2 feet is a lot smaller than a large crocodile.

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