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When Did Carcharocles megalodon Become Extinct? A New Analysis of the Fossil Record

Figure 1

Temporal distribution of the inferred dates of extinction of Carcharocles megalodon using the Optimal Linear Estimation (OLE) model bootstrapped 10,000 times.

The orange area shows the distribution of inferred dates of extinction through time, whereas the green line shows the cumulative frequency of inferred dates of extinction. The modal peak represents the point in time by which the species was most likely to have gone extinct (2.6 Ma). Approximately 50% of simulations fell before the modal peak of inferred dates of extinction (2.6 Ma), whereas the remaining 50% are roughly evenly distributed between the mode and the present day. The two vertical dashed lines indicate the most recent and oldest inferred dates of extinction (160,000 years in the future and 3.5 Ma respectively). The horizontal bars represent the time range of each fossil occurrence. The blue bars are the occurrences used in OLE. The grey bar represents the occurrences that failed the age evaluation process and were not used in the analysis.

Figure 1