was a genus of large ichthyosaurs that lived in the late Triassic. This genus was one of the largest of the ichthyosaurs with species measuring up to 50 feet long. Shonisaurus had a long snout and longer and narrower flippers than other ichthyosaurs, these features suggest that the shonisaurs may be an offshoot of the ichthyosaur line.
I have been a busy bee this week!! Look what I finished today! :)
Watercolor Pencil 8.5”x11”
As with everything I post, prints are available (sans “watermark” and ugly little smudge I didn’t realize was there until now).
Fossils of Enigmatic Sea Creatures Surface
by Sid Perkins
New fossil finds reveal that an enigmatic seafloor dweller first described more than a decade ago was armored and much larger than its modern-day kin. Cotyledion tylodes had a goblet-shaped body that surrounded a U-shaped gut (dark feature in fossil at left; arrows denote flow of food), and the animal spent its life anchored to the seafloor or to hard objects that had settled there, such as the molted exoskeletons of trilobites (artist’s representation at right). C. tylodes was first described in 1999 based on a couple of fragmentary fossils unearthed from 520-million-year-old rocks in southern China.
Previously, some scientists have proposed that the tentacled creatures were related to cnidarians, a group that contains jellyfish. But analyses of the new fossils—hundreds of well-preserved specimens extracted from the same ancient rocks—reveal that the animals belong to a group called entoprocts, aquatic creatures that attach to surfaces and filter their food from passing currents, the researchers report online today in Scientific Reports…
(read more: Science NOW)
(images: Zhifei Zhang et al., Scientific Reports)
Strombus galeatus (Eastern pacific Giant Conch)
from: Kiener, L. C. (1843). Spécies général et iconographie des coquilles vivantes : comprenant la collection du Muséum d’histoire naturelle de Paris, la collection Lamarck, celle du Prince Masséna … et les déecouvertes réecentes des voyageurs / par L.-C. Kiener. Vol. 4, p. 153.
Whale fall communities of the deep sea - the stage of opportunists by Michael Rothman
“After the removal of the flesh, lasting from a few days to a few years, the stage of enrichment opportunists begins, in which the bones and sediment surrounding the skeleton, rich in organic matter, are colonized by a community of polychaetes, molluscs , crustaceans and other invertebrates characterized by high density and low diversity. Among these is a particular polychaete, the family of Siboglinidae, said Osedax. Osedax, from the Latin os-(oxo)-and edax (eater) is equipped with a system of root like structures made of epithelial tissue that penetrate the bone and, inside the roots, endosimbiotic bacteria that degrade the fat present in bones, feeding on it and turn feeding the polychaete worms. Osedax characteristic for the plume of reddish gills exposed to ocean currents from which extracts the oxygen necessary for its aerobic metabolism, so it is surprisingly free of both mouth of the digestive tract.”
Text is a slightly edited Google translation of the source.
See also: Stage 1 & Stage 3
Dorsal and ventral views ofAustralian Giant Cuttlefish, Sepia apama
lithographic proofs from Prodromus of the Zoology of Victoria, John James Wild
(via: Museum Victoria)
Nyctosaurus gracilis (“night lizard”)
- Late Cretaceous (85 - 84,5 Ma)
- 6.6 ft wingspan and 4.2 lb
Described in 1876
Location : United States
Diet : Piscivore, probably insectivore