Category «Elasmosauridae»

Ogmodirus

The type skeleton of ‘Ogmodirus’ was collected in 1909 by C. Boyce from the upper Greenhorn Limestone Formation (Lower Turonian, Late Cretaceous) of Cloud County (near Aurora), Kansas (Storrs, 1999; Schumacher & Everhart, 2005). The specimen, KUVP 441, is a partial skeleton consisting of partial vertebral column (51 cervical vertebrae, 18 caudal vertebrae), limb, and girdle …

Elasmosauridae

The Elasmosauridae are very long-necked plesiosaurs. They form a major component of Late Cretaceous plesiosaur assemblages. The definition of Elasmosauridae has changed in recent years as our understanding of plesiosaur evolution has improved. Older definitions included many Jurassic long-necked forms (Bardet et al. 1999; Cruickshank et al. 2002). However, today Elasmosauridae has a more restricted …

Libonectes

Libonectes skull

Libonectes was erected for ‘Elasmosaurus morgani’. The pectoral girdle and a forelimb of the holotype are figured (most recently by Welles 1962, fig. 12) but now lost (Carpenter 1999). Libonectes morgani (Welles, 1949) is the type and only species. Type material of L. morgani (SMUSMP 69120) consists of a skull, cervical vertebrae and gastralia, from the …

Hydrotherosaurus

Welles (1943) derived the genus from the word “fisherman”, hence “fisherman lizard”. However, the genus translates more literally as “water beast reptile”. The type skeleton of Hydrotherosaurus was discovered in the Panoche Hills by Mr. Frank C. Paiva in 1937, and was excavated by the University of California Museum of Palaeontology, Berkeley, and Fresno State …

Elasmosaurus

Elasmosaurus is one of the most widely recognised plesiosaur names and has become a stereotype for all elasmosaurids. However, it is relatively poorly known. The type and only known specimen of Elasmosaurus platyurus (ANSP 10081) includes the tip of the snout, occipital condyle, and the majority of the vertebral column. It is from the Sharon …

Albertonectes

The holotype specimen (TMP 2007.0110001) consists of an almost complete skeleton lacking a skull. The neck contains 76 cervical vertebrae. This is a unique character of Albertonectes vanderveldei and the highest number of neck vertebrae known for any plesiosaur, surpassing the previous record-holder (Elasmosaurus) by four vertebrae. The distal-most caudal vertebrae (27th to 33rd) ofAlbertonectes …

Why did elasmosaurids have such a long neck?

It was once common knowledge that elasmosaurid plesiosaurs were bendy-necked beasts that swanned about near the surface, striking snake-like at slippery prey. It is now common knowledge that their necks were relatively rigid rod-like structures, the function of which remains something of a mystery. The truth, with regard to flexibility at least, is probably somewhere …

Long-necked plesiosaur discovered in northern Germany

A four-metre-long plesiosaur skeleton has been discovered by in Northern Germany by an amateur palaeontologist. 19-year-old fossil collector Sönke Simonsen discovered the specimen in June whilst looking for fossils with his dad in a quarry at Tongrube in Kreis Hoxter, near Bielefeld. “The first thing I discovered was a caudal-vertebra” said Simonsen, “but then I …