Megalodon vs Sperm Whale: Who Would Win in a Fight?

Written by Kyle Glatz
Published: April 24, 2022
Image Credit Herschel Hoffmeyer/Shutterstock.com
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Although humans tend to think of the great white shark as the scariest thing in the ocean, it’s tiny compared to the megalodon. As few as 2.6 million years ago, this monstrous predator roamed the oceans, eating everything from other sharks to whales. The largest toothed whale in the world, the sperm whale, is a massive carnivore in its own right. If we could get the two together in a megalodon vs sperm whale battle, which creature would win?

Today, we’re pitting a massive cartilaginous fish against one of the biggest mammals in existence!

Comparing a Megalodon and a Sperm Whale

The megalodon had an incredible bite power.

A-Z-Animals.com

MegalodonSperm Whale
SizeWeight: 50 tons
Length: upwards of 67 feet
Weight: 45 tons
Length: 49-59ft
Speed11 mph
– Undulating, side-to-side motions of body and tail are used for propulsion
– 4-23 mph
Defenses– Enormous size
– Fantastic array of senses, including the ampullae of Lorenzini that detects electrical fields
– Decent maximum speed  
– Massive size
– Some stay in pods with other whales to ward off prey
Produces a powerful click for echolocation, and that can also ward off predators that can’t stand 200+ dB
Offensive Capabilities– Jaws exceeding 6.5 feet in diameter, possibly 9 feet
– 250 teeth, about 7-inches long each
Bite exceeding 108,000N (up to 180,000N)  
– 36-60 cone-shaped teeth with a slight curve towards the back of its mouth
Has teeth up to 8 inches long and 2lbs in weight
– May use their tail offensively
– It’s possible they use their clicks offensively to disorient prey
Predatory Behavior– Ambush predator and opportunistic– Opportunistic predator  

What Are Key Differences Between a Megalodon and a Sperm Whale?

Shark Poop - A Sperm Whale Defacating
Sperm whales are large predators that can deal damage in many ways.

wildestanimal/Shutterstock.com

The biggest differences between a megalodon and a sperm whale can be found in their bodies. Megalodons are massive fish with a torpedo-shaped body, a tail that undulates side-to-side, and massive jaws with teeth on the top and bottom, but sperm whales are dark gray mammals with large teeth on their bottom jaw, long bodies, rounded heads, and a tail that moves up and down to propel them.

These differences are important for telling these animals apart, and they can help us start to consider how their unique qualities would impact a fight. Let’s take a closer look at the factors that would ultimately determine the winner of this battle.

What Are the Key Factors in a Fight Between a Megalodon and a Sperm Whale?

Animals With the Toughest Skin-sperm whale
Sperm whales have thick skin and blubber protecting them from bites.

wildestanimal/Shutterstock.com

The battle between a megalodon and a sperm whale would be a brutal affair. With such monstrous animals fighting, we have to look at several factors to figure out how the fight would go and which animal would win.

We will compare and contrast these creatures in light of five key factors. Then, we’ll determine which of them has the advantage over the other in a fight and decide which is poised to kill the other.

Megalodon vs Sperm Whale: Size

The megalodon and sperm whale are somewhat similar in size. It’s believed that an average megalodon would weigh about 50 tons and grow about 67 feet in length based on fossil records. Sperm whales weigh up to 45 tons and measure up to 59 feet long. The largest sperm whale weighed 57 tons and measured about 79 feet long.

We’re going to just call this section a tie since the purported weights and lengths of megalodons range well into the territory of sperm whale sizes.

Megalodon vs Sperm Whale: Speed and Movement

Sperm whales are faster than megalodons over short distances, but the megalodon may have been able to keep pace with the sperm whale over distances. Megalodons had a top speed of about 11 mph. However, sperm whales can reach speeds of 23 mph despite swimming at a leisurely 4-10 mph most of the time.

Sperm whales have the speed advantage in this case.

Megalodon vs Sperm Whale: Defenses

The sperm whale has great defenses.  For one thing, this whale has a massive size and a thick layer of blubber that protect its vital organs from damage. These whales are also known to stay in pods, at least in the case of females and juveniles. Moreover, sperm whales can produce an echolocation click that is over 200dB loud, enough to scare off many creatures.

The megalodon also found safety in its enormity as well as its array of senses. The shark probably had similar senses to the modern great white shark, capable of detecting electrical charges from their prey, sensing chemicals in the water, and seeing movement with ease. The overall speed of both animals helped keep them safe.

The sperm whale has an advantage in terms of defenses.

Megalodon vs Sperm Whale: Offensive Capabilities

The megalodon was a very effective killer owing to its massive bite. The megalodon’s jaws were about 6.5ft in diameter, possibly up to 9ft. The shark’s jaws could deliver a bite exceeding 108,000N, possibly one of the strongest bites of any sea creature. That bite would drive dozens of the shark’s 250, 7-inch teeth into the prey, removing a massive amount of flesh with each bite.

The sperm whale also has teeth. In fact, they’re some of the biggest teeth in the world. Their 36-60 cone-shaped teeth measure 8 inches long apiece. However, that’s not all they have. Sperm whales can ram prey with their massive heads, doing internal damage. They also have powerful tails and disorienting clicks.

For the ability to inflict damage, the megalodon has the advantage, but the sperm whale has more ways to attack enemies.

Megalodon vs Sperm Whale: Predatory Behavior

The megalodon is believed to have been an ambush predator as well as an opportunist. It would have no problem attacking its prey from below and shearing off massive amounts of flesh with a single bite.

The sperm whale is an opportunist through and through, but it knows to hunt its favorite food, squid, in the ocean depths.

Megalodon has the better predatory instincts of the two animals.  

Who Would Win in a Fight Between a Megalodon and a Sperm Whale?

Megalodon chasing dolphin
Megalodon may not exist any longer, but it would almost certainly kill a sperm whale.

A megalodon would win a fight against a sperm whale. The megalodon has stealth and experience killing whales on its side, but a sperm whale has never encountered anything like this creature before. Sure, they can get harassed and killed by orcas (killer whales), but nothing that has the biting power and size of a megalodon has attacked a sperm whale in the world today.

The attack would start from stealth, with the megalodon attacking from below the sperm whale. Its first strike could completely detach a pectoral fin or tear a huge chunk out of the sperm whale’s body. The whale’s skin and blubber are thick, so the megalodon would have to keep going back for more to kill the whale.

The sperm whale could counter, delivering a less effective bite of its own to the megalodon or trying to disorient it with its powerful echolocation.

However, the two attacks that have the greatest chance of killing the megalodon are tail thwacks and headbutts. Unfortunately, the sperm whale probably won’t be able to reach the speed needed to deliver a headbutt once this fight has started.

Moving around for a tail strike is completely possible, though. If the sperm whale’s tail hit a megalodon, it could be a knockout, but it would most likely just stun the creature. This battle would be drawn-out. The sperm whale might try to escape early in the fight as they do with predation attempts by orcas, but if the megalodon disables a fin, they’re going to be in serious trouble.

Overall, the sheer power and ability to tear creatures apart favor the megalodon in this situation, so they get the nod as the winner.  

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About the Author

I am a freelancer specializing in SEO content writing. I write in a variety of niches such as video games, animals, and managed service providers. I've been writing full-time since 2018, so I've been doing remote work before it was cool. When I'm not working, I can be found reading, trying to catch up on my tv show backlog, playing video games, and starting stories that I'll never finish.

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