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150 million years old ‘sea monster’ unearthed on UK coast

Published:

NEW DELHI: A remarkably well-preserved fossil of a

marine reptile

has been discovered on the

Jurassic Coast

of

Dorset

, UK, setting a Guinness world record for its completeness.
Dubbed “

Sea-Rex

,” the fossil represents the most intact

Pliosaurus skull

ever found, with around 95% of its surface area preserved. Pliosaurs – of which the group Pliosaurus, were among the largest marine predators, measuring over 10 meters in length.

The bite force of the Pliosaurus, estimated between 33,000 and 48,000 Newtons, dwarfs that of the saltwater crocodile, which holds the title of today’s heaviest reptile. The crocodile’s crushing force peaks at 16,414 N, making it the most formidable among living animals. To put this into perspective, humans typically exert a biting power of only 700 N.
The fossilized cranium unearthed from the coastal cliffs near Kimmeridge in Dorset measures nearly 2 meters (6 feet 6 inches) in length and 0.6 meters (2 feet) in width. It dates back approximately 150 million years, to a time when the region was submerged under tropical waters.

While similar-sized Pliosaurus skulls exist, the exceptional condition of this specimen distinguishes it.
This discovery sheds light on the

prehistoric marine ecosystem

and offers valuable insights into the biology and behavior of these ancient predators.

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