June 10, 2017:
Here is a list of 12 horrifying and gigantic creatures that we should feel lucky are extinct because let’s be honest! In today’s world, which is already filled with pollution and corruption, a giant scorpion or a mega shark is likely to make things worse!
Gigantic Millipedes: Arthropleura, or giant millipedes were very much similar to the modern day millipedes; the only “little” difference would be its two-metre length. It’s a relief indeed that we don’t encounter these massive crawlers today.
Massive hybrids of Scorpions and Millipedes: These weird species which can be considered a hybrid between scorpions and millipedes, known as Jaekelopterus, used to be nearly 2.5 metres long. These creatures lived in fresh water and were cruel predators. One researcher told Nature: “They would probably lie in wait. When another animal went in front of it, it would lurch forward and capture it. … These things would tear their prey to shreds and then eat the little pieces.”
Spiders with scorpion like stings: Spiders or Scorpions alone are scary enough; imagine a giant combination of both! Attercopus was the earliest known true spider that could produce a web. But the fossils of it that have been found show its spider body parts and its scorpion tail. It does not take a genius to figure that this creature was not very friendly.
Giant Crocodiles: The normal crocodiles are giant enough, but this prehistoric crocodile that lived nearly eight million years ago was twice as big as the regular crocodiles today and twice as terrifying. These reptiles lived in South America and would grow up to be 13 meters long. A creature like Purassaurus can appear only in nightmares.
Megasharks: Megasharks, popularly known as Megalodons, grew up to more than 50 feet long, more than twice as big as today’s largest great white shark. Assumptions say that their teeth were the size of an average human hand. Even though there is no solid proof, many people still believe these aren’t extinct yet. A number of sightings have been reported, just like the Loch Ness monster. Anyway, Megalodon still remains a myth today.
Big scary hybrids between Prawns and Squids: This sea-giant can be described as a squid and a prawn combined, with a lot of teeth. Anomalocaris lived 540 million years ago and grew up to 60 cm long- though researchers believe it could have been bigger. They had shells and tails like shrimps, but squid-like tentacles and eyes, except those tentacles, had a lot of sharp teeth on them. It was carnivorous and huge; just imagine how it would have sucked up its prey with its teethy tentacles.
Massive Scorpions: These creatures would definitely resemble some monster described in ancient Greek or Roman mythologies. Pulmonoscorpius were similar to modern day scorpions with front claws and a sting in its tail. But it was a metre long. It could easily pick you up its tail and throw you out, and let’s not forget the poisonous sting.
Giant Piranhas: Modern piranhas are sneaky and scary enough, imagine these prehistoric megapiranhas that grew up to a metre long. They lived between eight and 10 million years ago. The thought of a bunch of megapiranhas attacking it’s prey is enough to keep one up all night.
Huge Dragonflies: These might not sound so horrible, but just give it a read. Meganeura had wingspans of 70 cms, the length of a human arm. It would not be particularly easy to drive them away or get rid of them.
Monster Snakes: Not talking about a Hollywood film, oversized snaked once roamed the earth, nearly 60 million years ago. Titanoboa grew up to 13 metres long and weighed over a ton. It lived in the warm climates of the tropics. It killed its prey by squashing it just like the modern boa constrictor. The fact that there is pretty much nothing that thing couldn’t squeeze like a tube of toothpaste makes it a nightmare-come-true.
Penguins as tall as humans: Yes, we all agree that penguins are adorable. The idea of a human sized penguin does not sound so bad. Palaeeudyptes klekowskii were human sized penguins that lived nearly 37 million years ago, and stood at around two metres tall. Why the idea of a giant penguin is not that amazing is probably because while you would wanna hug it and cuddle it, it could easily skewer your head with its huge beak or crush you with it’s big flippers.
Enormous shelled Squid: It is indicated by the surviving Cameroceras shell fragments that the creature could have been nearly nine metres long or more. The largest predator in the ocean when it was alive almost 470 million years ago, this fearsome squid ruled the seas even though it was almost blind. Needless to say, it had massive tentacles and we can easily guess what a painful death it brought for its victim.
Needless to say that it’s not a very bad thing that these creatures don’t exist today!
– by Durba Mandal of NewsGram. Twitter: @dubumerang