Elasmosauridae

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Elasmosaurids
Temporal range: Late Triassic - Late Cretaceous, 210–66Ma
Elasmosaurus2.jpg
Artist's restoration of Elasmosaurus platyurus
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Superorder: Sauropterygia
Order: Plesiosauria
Superfamily: Plesiosauroidea
Family: Elasmosauridae
Cope, 1869
Genera

See text

Synonyms

Cimoliasauridae Persson, 1960

Elasmosauridae was a family of plesiosaurs. They had the longest necks of the plesiosaurs and survived from the Late Triassic to the end of the Cretaceous. New[when?] evidence suggests that their diet mainly consisted of crustaceans and molluscs.

Size[edit]

Elasmosaurus platyurus in the Rocky Mountain Dinosaur Resource Center in Woodland Park, Colorado

The earliest elasmosaurids were small, about 3 m (9.8 ft). At the end of the Cretaceous, elasmosaurids grew as large as 14 m (46 ft), such as Elasmosaurus. Their necks were the longest of all the plesiosaurs, with anywhere between 32 to 76 (Albertonectes) cervical vertebrae They weighed up to several tons.

Taxonomy[edit]

The family Elasmosauridae was erected by Cope in 1869, and anchored on the genus Elasmosaurus.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Patrick S. Druckenmiller and Anthony P. Russell (2006). "A new elasmosaurid plesiosaur (Reptilia: Sauropterygia) from the Lower Cretaceous Clearwater Formation, northeastern Alberta, Canada". Paludicola (Special Issue, in memory of Elizabeth "Betsy" Nicholls) 5 (4): 184–199. 
  2. ^ Peggy Vincent, Nathalie Bardet, Xabier Pereda Suberbiola, Baâdi Bouya, Mbarek Amaghzaz and Saïd Meslouh (2011). "Zarafasaura oceanis, a new elasmosaurid (Reptilia: Sauropterygia) from the Maastrichtian Phosphates of Morocco and the palaeobiogeography of latest Cretaceous plesiosaurs". Gondwana Research 19 (4): 1062–1073. doi:10.1016/j.gr.2010.10.005. 
  3. ^ F. Robin O'Keefe and Hallie P. Street (2009). "Osteology Of The Cryptoclidoid Plesiosaur Tatenectes laramiensis, With Comments On The Taxonomic Status Of The Cimoliasauridae". Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 29 (1): 48–57. doi:10.1671/039.029.0118. 
  4. ^ Benjamin P. Kear (2005). "A new elasmosaurid plesiosaur from the Lower Cretaceous of Queensland, Australia". Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 25 (4): 792–805. doi:10.1671/0272-4634(2005)025[0792:ANEPFT]2.0.CO;2. 

External links[edit]