Home AnimalsThese Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
AnimalsBy Joe Burgett -

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Catmando/Shutterstock.com]

Dunkleosteus

  • Historic Period: Late Devonian

The Dunkleosteus was quite unique and among the top apex predators of its time period. This species was found in the water and routinely preyed on sharks and even other top predators. The Dunkleosteus had an armor-like plating, making them impossible for other predators to truly battle against. They had one of the single strongest bites ever recorded. Measurements found they were able to bite with a pressure of 8,000 pounds per square inch.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Leotrex-Artstation]
This is on par with the Tyrannosaurus Rex! That is only measuring from the tip of its fang too. The species averaged 33 feet in length, and they were said to be relatively quick based on their frame. All of this made them a creature to fear for any species that decided to go into the water. They were as powerful as a whale, as skilled and speedy as a shark, and as ruthless as a modern crocodile. It’s clear that they should be among the most threatening prehistoric predators.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Live Science]

Josephoartigasia monesi

  • Historic Period: Pliocene to Early Pleistocene

At first glance, images of these creatures would never tell the full story. While they looked a lot like the modern-day Capybara, and are likely even related to them, they were much larger. This is the largest rodent species to ever exist. The Josephoartigasia monesi had skulls up to 21 inches long, a body length of up to 10 feet, and a height of around five feet. This also came with incisors more than 12 inches in length!

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Reddit]
If that was not enough to make you think twice about not fearing this species, its weight surely would make you think twice. It is said that the weight was debated for years. Initially, they found the average weight was between 880 to 1,540 lbs. Yet when comparing them with other extinct rodents, they found this species could have been up to 5,701 lbs! The median of this is said to be roughly 2,670 lbs. That would certainly put them among the most threatening prehistoric predators.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Daniel Eskridge/Shutterstock.com]

Livyatan

  • Historic Period: Miocene Epoch (Tortonian Stage)

While it was assumed for years, we’re now pretty much sold on the idea that the Livyatan was the inspiration for the story of the whale from the Moby Dick novel. It is also widely assumed to be the inspiration for the Leviathan creature. As you can guess, this is an extinct whale species. Specifically, it was a highly predatory sperm whale species. They preyed pretty much on anything in the water, yet mostly went after other whales as well as seals and much more.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Balazs Petheo]
They lived in the Miocene Epoch, going extinct just under 10 million years ago. It likely went extinct for a few reasons. One being the colder climate it faced at the end of the Miocene as well as competition for food. They were the size of your modern sperm whale, with larger mouths and teeth. Therefore, they were far too large to go without food for long. Regardless of why they went extinct, the Livyatan is certainly among the most threatening prehistoric predators in history for sure.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Mark Witten]

Megatherium

  • Historic Period: Early Pliocene to End of Pleistocene

The Megatherium, like many others on this list, is known for being a bit unique. They are pretty much a prehistoric version of what we know today as a sloth. Of course, they differ heavily from them but this is the closest living relative. They were what we call “ground sloths” in science, and the biggest of the species was about the size of a full-grown elephant. While not all reach this size, it’s not like smaller ones are that far off. They can be quite large as well.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Esteban De Armas/Shutterstock.com]
This species only went extinct around 12,000 years ago, which is barely anything compared to some on this list. Their decline is directly caused by two things, new human settlements and the Quaternary Extinction Event. This means early Homo sapiens and possibly Homo Erectus came across the Megatherium. They were quite dangerous due to their size and muscular build. If they did come across humans, the humans would have a tough time with them for sure.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Michael Rosskothen/Shutterstock.com]

Titanoboa

  • Historic Period: Middle to Late Paleocene Epoch

If you’re not a fan of snakes, look away now, because this is the largest snake ever to have lived. If you thought today’s anaconda was huge, they’d look like babies next to the Titanoboa. It is said they lived roughly 50 to 60 million years ago, meaning they would not have come across the most recent versions of humans. It is a good thing too because humans would have never stood a chance against the Titanoboa.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Daniel Eskridge/Shutterstock.com]
They measured out to roughly 42 feet in length and could weigh around 2,500 lbs. This means they literally weighed over a ton, and some very well could have weighed more. Scientists believe, based on all known creatures during their time, the Titanoboa would have been a major apex predator. This is enough to land on this list of the most threatening prehistoric predators alone, yet they also found its mouth could pretty much swallow an entire human in one go, with teeth the length of a human head.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Herschel Hoffmeyer/Shutterstock.com]

Therizinosaurus

  • Historic Period: Late Cretaceous

If you’re searching for a creature that looked the most like what the movies claim dinosaurs looked like, look no further than the Therizinosaurus. This was a reptile and very lizard-like, except it differs from modern lizards in a few major ways. Even compared to the larger monitor lizards, Therizinosaurus was gigantic. They’d grow to somewhere within 30 to 33 feet long and weigh over 6,600 lbs. Literally, they weighed over three tons, which is simply massive.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Dinopedia.com]
This species also has the longest claws on record of any animal, around 20 inches long! The claws were stiff and elongated, which came in handy. They were pretty slow and widely assumed to be herbivores with a horny beak and wide torso. Its body certainly helped it as a herbivore as its height heavily benefitted them when it came to pulling down vegetation obviously. In spite of mostly liking plants, they are clearly among the most threatening prehistoric predators due to their potential.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Herschel Hoffmeyer/Shutterstock.com]

Megalodon

  • Historic Period: Early Miocene to Pliocene

If you’re looking for a nightmare sea creature of any kind, the Megalodon would be the most prominent. This is the largest shark species ever known to man. While scientists all differ on its closest living shark relative, many believe it is related most to the whale shark, basking shark, or sand tiger shark. Yet it is much larger than any of the three. Megalodon reached between 47 and 52 feet in length, but some averaged out to around 34 feet. This might depend on the specific fossils you study.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Catmando/Shutterstock.com]
They had notably large teeth with amazing force. Their bite force reached between 25,000 to 41,000lbs, among the most known for any creature. Their impressively large jaws certainly assisted heavily with this, but the Meg’s teeth were heavily threatening too. They were thick and robust, making them specifically built for breaking through bones. They could take down today’s full-grown whales, so it’s clear they are among the most threatening prehistoric predators, for sure.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Daily Excelsior]

Deinosuchus

  • Historic Period: Late Cretaceous

The Deinosuchus is closely related to the modern crocodile and is essentially just a prehistoric version of one. Of course, that obviously means they were a lot larger, as Crocs do date back to the prehistoric era. Nothing really changed in them after they perfected the design, except for size differences. The Deinosuchus last lived between 82 to 73 million years ago. During their time, they measured up to around 39 feet in total length, dwarfing later Crocs.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Hakai Magazine]
Their teeth were meant for destroying and had one of the strongest bite forces of any creature during its era. The bite force would have been around 23,000 PSI, which is roughly around 23,000lbs. They likely fed on mostly water-based creatures like fish and large sea turtles. However, the Deinosuchus was fully capable of taking down and eating the most dinosaurs that they would have come across. In fact, it is widely assumed that they would have at some point.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Reddit]

Megalania

  • Historic Period: Pleistocene

The Megalania was a prehistoric monitor lizard and said to be the first major creature to have settled in Australia. The youngest fossils we have on record date back to only 50,000 years ago. Due to the widespread native population that has been in Australia for thousands of years, it is possible early humans came across these massive creatures. In fact, they are the ancestor of the Komodo Dragon. Many feel that they are the creature that truly inspired the Dragon legend as well.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Pinterest]
They could not fly but they reached around 23 feet in length and weighed a little over 1,300lbs. They had the same venom in their saliva that Komodo’s have today, and the current version can make your skin burn. A more powerful version could make it feel on fire. Therefore, some early humans could have used them to inspire the Dragon spitting fire myth, as it sort of did do this. They simply did not know what venom was at that time, and tales can miss little details after thousands of years.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Daniel Eskridge/Shutterstock.com]

Saber-Toothed Tiger

  • Historic Period: Pleistocene

In spite of the names used for the creature (Saber-Toothed Tiger/Saber-Toothed Cat), it was not a tiger nor a cat at all. In fact, the Saber-Toothed Tigers were actually more closely related to modern-day marsupials like the Kangaroo. They come across as cats by how they appeared, yet they would have had pouches too. They were large predatory mammals that hunted in packs or alone and were apex during their era. The species did not go extinct completely until around 11,000 years ago.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Esteban De Armas/Shutterstock.com]
We often connect them to Dinosaurs but it’s unlikely that they lived much alongside them, if at all. More than most, human beings almost certainly came across the species. They were slightly larger than most modern-day predatory big cats like Lions and Tigers, and they also had their infamous dual mandible teeth. Sabers were also bear-like in their build, making them tough to deal with. Clearly, they are among the most threatening prehistoric predators known.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Universal Pictures]

Tyrannosaurus Rex

  • Historic Period: Late Cretaceous

We all know that you looked at this list of the most threatening prehistoric predators and just knew the Tyrannosaurus Rex had to be on the list. Of course, we could not let you down there. Sadly, we must burst your bubble and say they did not look quite like the T-Rex you see from Jurassic Park. They also were not around for as long as people think as they came in during the Late Cretaceous period.

These Threatening Prehistoric Predators Would Wreak Havoc Today
[Image via Reddit]
In spite of not technically being a reptile, the T-Rex is also the last of the dinosaurs to be non-avian. However, they still connect to birds, mostly the Ratites or large flightless birds, like Ostriches. Yet they grew in lengths of up to 40 feet and heights of around 12 to 13 feet. They also would have weighed at least 14 metric tons on average or just under 31,000lbs. The T-Rex also had a bite force of around 12,000lbs. Of course, they also likely had a lot of feathers and hair too. Which is kind of comical.

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