Welcome to the Plesiosaur Directory, for everything ‘plesiosaur’!

During the Mesozoic Era, while dinosaurs dominated the land and pterosaurs patrolled the sky, an equally spectacular array of reptiles ruled the oceans. Several groups of prehistoric marine reptiles became adapted to life in the ocean, but plesiosaurs were probably the most bizarre. With their four flippers and often long necks, no other animal is quite like a plesiosaur. This website is dedicated to them and their close relatives.

The Plesiosaur Directory is for anyone interested in any aspect of plesiosaurs and their kin. You will find information about their anatomy, classification, evolution, and stratigraphic distribution, along with data on specific genera and species. There are also sections dedicated to plesiosaur palaeobiology or how the animals were in life – key questions here concern their swimming and diet. I’ve endeavoured to make the site as image-rich as possible by incorporating photographs of plesiosaur fossils, line drawings of bones and skeletons, and restorations of their possible appearance in life.

Liopleurodon ferox skeleton

Going beyond the science I also consider plesiosaurs in popular culture including films, toys and purported living monsters. This site will always be under development as our understanding of plesiosaurs develops, and you can also keep up to date with the latest plesiosaur news and discoveries on the ‘Plesiosaur Bites’ blog.


Dr Adam S. Smith