Kaiwhekea, also known as the ‘Shag Point Plesiosaur’, was classified as a cryptoclidid by Cruickshank and Fordyce (2002). More recent classifications regard it as an aristonectid. It has an unusually large number of small needle-like teeth and a shortened snout, much like the closely related Aristonectes. Kaiwhekea katiki is the type and only species.
Cruickshank and Fordyce, 2002
Boundary between Upper and Lower Maastrichtian, Upper Cretaceous
Lower to Middle Katiki Formation, Dimitobelus hectori Zone (for belemnites) Palaeocystodinium granulatum Subzone (for dinoflagellates)
Shore platform at Shag Point (45* 28' S, 170* 49'E) north of the Shag River Mouth, North Otago, South Island, New Zealand
OU 12649, an almost complete skull, almost complete vertebral column minus the posterior caudal vertebrae, almost complete ribcage, some gastralia, partial pelvic girdle and associated right hindlimb and fragmentary left hindlimb.