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Plesiosaurus Teeth

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Plesiosaurs were a group of marine reptiles that lived during the Mesozoic Era. They were most common during the Jurassic Period. As a group they were among the largest marine predators ever to swim the oceans. The plesiosaur teeth we have for sale are from the Cretaceous Period and were found in Morocco.

pterosaur drawing.

Plesiosaurs were carniverous marine reptiles that lived from the end of the Triassic Period to the end of the Cretaceous Period. Their fossils have been found all over the world.

They had a small head on a long neck, short tails, broad backs, and four flippers. There were more than 100 species of Plesiosaur ranging in size from the small Thalassiodracon about 5 feet long the very large Elasmosaurus that could be over 40 feet long and weigh up to 6 tons.!

History of Plesiosaur Discovery

The history of plesiosaur discovery is a long and rich tail. Partial skeletons were known as far back as the 1600’s. With many fossil finds turning up around England and Europe. These early discoveries were poorly understood and interpreted as fish, crocodiles, and dolphins.

Perhalps the first complete plesiosaur was discovered by the famous Mary Anning at Lyme Regis in Dorset, England in the early 1820’s.

In the mid 1800’s plesiosaur remains were found in the Niobrara Chalk in kansas. One of these early American finds was donated to the famous American scientist Edward Drinker Cope. As Cope assembled the skeleton, he mistakenly attached the head to the tail. He was very excited about his find and rushed to publish a paper describing it. He also invited other paleontologists to see it. One of these scientists was Orthniel Charles Marsh. Marsh suggested that the Cope had reversed the orientation of the vertebral column. Thus began the infamous bone wars between Cope and Marsh.

Because so many complete skeletons have been found, the plesiasaurs are one of the best known animals of the Mesozoic Era.

Pleisosaur Teeth and Diet

Plesiosaus had small heads and teeth that were slender for the size of this animal. Most plesiosaur skeletons on display in todays museums have the teeth mounted so that they protrude from the mouth and interlock top to bottom.They probably ate squid and fish. It is not likely that they could eat ammonites, shell fish or large prey.

Plesiosaur Behavior

Not much is known about plesiosaur behavior. We have some clues but for the most part educated guesses are the best we can do to describe how these animals lived.

Live Birth

Fossil Plesiosaurs have been found pregnant with rather large baby plesiosaurs. This evidence indicates that they may have given birth to a single live baby. We can speculate that they may have taken care of their young for some time after birth.

Plesiosaur Movement

Plesiosaurs had 2 pairs of paddle like flippers that they used to swim. They had broad backs and short tails.

We don’t know for sure how plesiosaurs swam. Many theories have been presented. Recent research suggests that all four flippers were used at the same time with the front and rear pairs alternating their downward strokes. They seem to be built to be agile rather than fast.

On the subject of movement what about those long necks? Again lots of theories. Current research says that the necks not very flexible and could not be held in a vertical position for very long if at all. It may have been useful for catching prey.

The Plesiosaurus Timeline and Fact File

The Plesiosaurus Timeline and Fact File

There are 2 suborders of Plesiosaurs:
Plesiosauroidea were long necked while Pliosauroidea had short necks.

Learn more about plesiosaurs here.

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