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Re: Sauropterygian falls?

That's a very good question. Another interesting fact about some
Ichthyosaurs, specifically _Shonisaurus_, is that the adults are edentulous.
So some suggest that they may have been similar to rorqual whales, as the
hyoid apparatus in this specimen measured nearly 5 feet long. This specimen
as well had a skull approximately 2 meters long, and that was missing most
of the bones anterior to the frontals, and no Ichthyosaur teeth were found
at this site at all.

Also, this find is dated to be Norian (Late Triassic) in age, so
Ichthyosaurs got really big, really fast.

A link to the abstract can be found here:

----- Original Message -----
From: "Tim Williams" <twilliams_alpha@hotmail.com>
To: <dinosaur@usc.edu>
Sent: Tuesday, March 01, 2005 8:53 AM
Subject: Re: Sauropterygian falls?

> Daniel Arndt wrote:
> >Well, a recent paper by the late Elizabeth Nicholls gives an estimate of
> >the
> >largest _Shonisaurus_ species, to have been 23 meters long (which by my
> >recollection of the specimen itself, is possibly a conservative
> >and there have been vertebral centra which were much larger than the ones
> >found at that particular _Shonisaurus_ site.
> >
> >It is interesting though, that you mention what sort of microcommunities
> >would have been surrounding an Ichthyosaur fall. At the Sikanni Chief
> >site in Northern B.C., where the massive _Shonisaurus_ specimen was
> >unearthed, the amount of bivalves found in association with the specimen
> >were significantly larger than the concentration of bivalves in that
> >nearby.
> Wow, that's pretty amazing - and I mean both the size of the _Shonisaurus_
> specimen, and the number of bivalves associated with the specimen.  Any
> on what these mega-ichthyosaurs fed on when they were alive?