Skip to comments.180-million-year-old 'sea monster' found with skin and blubber [Ichthyosaur]
Posted on 12/06/2018 11:50:55 AM PST by ETL
The fossil of a 180-million-year-old ichthyosaur from the Jurassic era has been discovered and it contains evidence of blubber and skin, making the creature more similar to modern-day dolphins than previously thought.
The team of researchers from North Carolina State University and Swedens Lund University used molecular and microstructural analysis to determine that the creature, described by National Geographic as a "sea monster," was likely warm-blooded and potentially could use its coloration to help it hide from predators.
Ichthyosaurs are interesting because they have many traits in common with dolphins, but are not at all closely related to those sea-dwelling mammals, says research co-author Mary Schweitzer in a statement. We arent exactly sure of their biology either. They have many features in common with living marine reptiles like sea turtles, but we know from the fossil record that they gave live birth, which is associated with warm-bloodedness. This study reveals some of those biological mysteries.
Johan Lindgren, the lead author on the study, noted Both the body outline and remnants of internal organs are clearly visible, adding Remarkably, the fossil is so well-preserved that it is possible to observe individual cellular layers within its skin.
The study has been published in the scientific journal Nature.
In addition to blubber and skin, the researchers found traces of an internal organ that is believed to be the creature's liver.
Evidence of the blubber, which is only found in "animals capable of maintaining body temperatures independent of ambient conditions," as well as the liver denotes that the creature had a similar skin makeup to a whale, dark on top and light on the bottom, to help it avoid predators.
(Excerpt) Read more at foxnews.com ...
Fossil preserves ‘sea monster’ blubber and skin
By Paul Rincon Science editor, BBC News website
The top illustration in your post reminds me of a Dolphin.
Let’s clone it and open a theme park.
I hereby decree that the term “blubber” shall from henceforth be used more frequently in the common parlance.
They found Rosie O’Donnell’s body?
Is that real?
Form following function leads to very similar streamlined shapes for marine predators.
Incredible find. I luved the Mosasaur featured in “Jurassic World” but was disappointed there was no dolphin like show featuring Ichtyosaurs.
Or maybe the simpler explanation - that it wasn't a reptile at all....????
As in ‘Bring home the blubber?’
Their first fossil remains were discovered in a limestone quarry at Maastricht on the Meuse in 1764.
Mosasaurs probably evolved from an extinct group of aquatic lizards known as aigialosaurs in the Early Cretaceous.
During the last 20 million years of the Cretaceous period (Turonian-Maastrichtian ages), with the extinction of the ichthyosaurs and pliosaurs, mosasaurs became the dominant marine predators.
They became extinct as a result of the K-Pg event at the end of the Cretaceous period, about 66 million years ago.
That is funny someone actually checked the size of the Mosasaur from the movie.
BS, this doesn’t prove that the tissues can “preserve” for a long time. It proves the tissues haven’t been in the stone for a long time.
Yea, and Amen!
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