What if You Had to Face the Scariest Animals Ever?

Fuzzy and Nutz have been on a journey through
time, and during their era-hopping trek have been showing us what life was like in the
Stone Age, the greatest mass extinctions ever, and what the earliest civilizations were like. But now they’re somewhere in the ancient past,
deep beneath the primeval ocean at a time of the first super-predator… Anomalocaris inhabited the oceans over half
a billion years ago before complex life existed on land. Originally discovered in fragments, this strangely
shaped animal grew to over a meter in length and was originally thought to be three different
animals- a sponge, a jellyfish, and a strangely shaped shrimp. It wasn’t until 1981 that the individual fragments
were reexamined that scientists realized they all fit together to make one very weird animal. Armed with powerful tentacles and a square-shaped
mouth, Anomalocaris is thought to have preyed on Trilobites, but it wasn’t until the discovery
of well-preserved eyes that showed Anomalocaris possessed compound eyes with incredibly acute
vision that its reputation as one of the world’s first top predators was cemented. Anomalocaris may have been one of the world’s
first super predators, but no animal to have ever existed matches the Tyrannosaurus Rex
for sheer power and ferocity. Armed with six to twelve inch teeth and the
most powerful bite in the history of the earth, T. Rex was a fearsome apex predator of the
Cretaceous, ruling over its dinosaur prey for nearly twenty million years. Reaching a height of 13 feet (4 meters) at
its hips and with a length of 40 feet (12.3 meters), T. Rex weighed a staggering 9 tons. Yet some scientists argue whether T Rex was
really a super predator at all, and think he may have been nothing more than a scavenger
evolved to such terrifying proportions in order to scare away smaller carnivores from
their kills. This minority of scientists think that the
mighty T. Rex was basically just a big buzzard, looking for dead or dying prey rather than
killing it itself. The discovery of healed bite marks on a sauropod’s
bones though have mostly put this theory to rest, showing that a T. Rex had indeed attacked
another dinosaur and tried to kill it in what was certainly predatory behavior. Tyrannosaurus Rex’s reputation as one of the
most fearsome carnivores to have ever lived is thus secure for the time being. Forced to remain small and out of sight of
stampeding dinosaurs, mammals would quickly rise up to take the crown of top predator
after their extinction- and out of all the predatory mammals to have ever lived none
was more iconic, or dangerous, than Smilodon- the sabre-toothed tiger! Armed with two canines that grew up to 11
inches (28cm) in length, the sabre-toothed tiger was aptly named! This Ice Age big cat hunted alongside- and
probably on- modern man, dying out only 10,000 years ago during the mysterious extinction
of all the large Ice Ace mammals such as the mammoth. Stumped for decades about how Smilodon actually
killed its prey, recent computer simulations discovered that the teeth were too brittle
for a traditional bite that might strike bone, so scientists now think that Smilodon actually
used its powerful muscles to wrestle prey to the ground and then deliver a killing bite
to the neck like a giant furry vampire. Long thought to be a solitary animal much
like a modern tiger or panther, the recent discovery of a Smilodon hip showing a crippling,
but healed wound, has lead some scientists to think that Smilodons were actually pack
animals, as only living in a pack could this crippled Smilodon have survived. Sadly, though modern man spent 50,000 years
living alongside these fearsome cats, we ultimately know very little about how Smilodon lived,
except for one thing: it was clearly the most fearsome predator of its time! History’s greatest predators have sported
some of the largest teeth and claws to have ever evolved, but that’s probably because
some of the animals they hunted were big.. really, really big…

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