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Ancient Giant Armored Fish Fed May Have Been Gentle Giant

Aquariums are excellent. Big halls lined with enormous windows that look in on watery worlds filled with strange life forms. And one of the most fun things to do in aquariums is to walk someone up to a particularly scary looking creature, like a basking shark, and let them know that is is a gentle giant. Basking sharks, whale sharks, and even the legendary, enormous, totally real, dark water dwelling megamouth shark are all filter feeders, who swim slowly, feasting on some of the smallest animals in the ocean.

As it turns out, one of the most terrifying-looking pre-historic creatures may have been another gentle giant. Here’s more from Phys.Org:

[Lead author Sam Coatham] “We have found that Titanichthys was very likely to have been a suspension-feeder, showing that its lower jaw was considerably less mechanically robust than those of other placoderm species that fed on large or hard-shelled prey….” The fossils of Titanichthys used in the study were found in the Moroccan part of the Sahara Desert by co-author Christian Klug, a researcher at the University of Zurich. He added: “When you do in the Anti-Atlas, massive skull bones of placoderms can be found quite frequently.”

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