Artwork by Todd Marshall
Copyright Todd Marshall/High Country News
Artwork by Karen Carr
Parrett Pictures / Flickr
That basically hit a reset button on ecosystems in the ocean. It opened up new opportunities. We think that allowed some of these land animals to start to move in. In a narrower sense, they were probably really adapting to resources that were around them. They followed their stomachs into the ocean.
Illustration of Nothosaurus by Brian Choo.
The discovery of a gigantic fanged sea dragon, which hunted the oceans in southwestern China around 247 million years ago, is a sign that global marine ecosystems recovered more broadly than previously thought after the world’s worst mass extinction.
It’s taken 64 years to for scientists to be sure, but they have finally determined that bones found on the North Slope of Alaska’s Brooks Range are those of an ichthyosaur, a giant marine reptile from the time of the dinosaurs.
The Luoping area is famous for its scenery and rich deposits of marine fossils. (ConfuciusInstitute/photo)
Two paleontologists from UC Davis are among a group of experts advising government leaders in Luoping, China, on fossil conservation and the development of a geological park.
Still from "Ancient Sea Monsters" National Geographic Channel November 2010
Once we got to the bottom of Fossil Hill, we followed the team as they began to scour the hillside, looking for anything that might be a slight discoloration in the rock. Our hope was to find something that could be considered an “early” Ichthyosaur.