Kronosaurus


Genus

Kronosaurus

Author

Longman, 1924

Classification

Sauropterygia
Eosauropterygia
Eusauropterygia
Pistosauroidea
Pistosauria
Plesiosauria
Pliosauroidea
Pliosauridae

Age

Aptian to Albian, Lower Cretaceous

Location

Queensland, Australia, and Colombia

Type species

K. queenslandicus

Other species

K. boyacensis

Referred material

To compile

Due to its large size and ferocious appearance, Kronosaurus is one of the most famous plesiosaurs. The iconic skeleton referred to Kronosaurus on display in the Museum of Comparative Zoology in Harvard is nicknamed ‘plasterosaurus’ because so much of it is reconstructed in plaster. About a third of the skeleton is plaster and there are at least seven vertebrae too many in the dorsal region of the vertebral column. As mounted, the specimen measures 42 feet (12.8m), but the actual length would be considerably less in reality. Kronosaurus was named after the mythical Kronos who, according to Greek mythology, swallowed his five children as they were born.

There are presently two known species of Kronosaurus. Kronosaurus queenslandicus Longman, 1924 (the type species), and Kronosaurus boyacensis Hampe, 1992.

Kronosaurus queenslandicus

Species

K. queenslandicus

Author

Longman, 1924

Classification

Sauropterygia
Eosauropterygia
Eusauropterygia
Pistosauroidea
Pistosauria
Plesiosauria
Pliosauroidea
Pliosauridae
Kronosaurus

Age

Albian, Lower Cretaceous

Formation

?

Type location

'Army Downs', the Hughenden district (north of Richmond), Queensland, Australia

Type specimen

Queensland Museum (unspecified)

Referred material

MCZ 1285, an incomplete skeleton (the famous Harvard 'plasterosaurus' skeleton); MCZ 1284, a rostrum with teeth

Kronosaurus boyacensis

Species

K. boyacensis

Author

Hampe, 1992

Classification

Sauropterygia
Eosauropterygia
Eusauropterygia
Pistosauroidea
Pistosauria
Plesiosauria
Pliosauroidea
Pliosauridae
Kronosaurus

Age

Upper Aptian

Formation

Paja Formation (Section 5)

Type location

Vereda Monquirá, about 5km WNW of Villa de Leyva, Boyacá Province, Colombia

Type specimen

"El Fosil" (See Hampe, 1992)

Referred material

None