These prehistoric marine vertebrates have survived long after their assumed date ofdeath.
By Abdullah Abbadi/Blue Line News
The ichthyosaurs were giant marine reptiles like the plesiosaurs and mosasaurs, whose ancestors were terrestrial reptiles. “Their size varied from less than one meter and more than 20m. Some were fast swimmers and able to dive to great depths with huge eyeballs and a warm-blooded physiology, “said Valentin Fischer at the University of Liège. The ichthyosaurs were a major component of marine ecosystems of the time of the dinosaurs, occupying many ecological niches.
Until recently, paleontologists believed they had been largely decimated, there are 145 million years ago during the Jurassic–Cretaceous extinction. But discovery of a new species of ichthyosaur significantly changes our understanding of evolution and extinction of marine reptiles of the dinosaur era, according to a study published this week in PLoS ONE by an international team of Belgian scientists , British and German.
Researchers after examinations and dating of fossils belonging to several museums, including a new species of Acamptonectes Densus discovery, researchers were able to estimate the degree of species diversity of ichthyosaurs during the Jurassic-Cretaceous extinction and the period following . They show that ichthyosaurs did not suffer a major extinction at the end of the Jurassic (there are 145 million years) and the ichthyosaurs have remained very diverse until their final extinction, which lasted for about 94 million years.
Selected source from editor for further read: Plos Published: January 3, 2012
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