Scientists shed light on Gigantic Marine Lizards

Researchers have provided insight into the gigantic marine lizards known as Mosasaurs. The researchers at the University of Toronto and Yale University have also deciphered their breeding and birth. Published in the journal Palaeontology on April 10, the study has answered some long-held questions about the deadly creatures that were used to reside in waters of earth before going extinct 65 million years ago.

For the study, the researchers examined recently identified specimens of the ancient marine lizards at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History.

According to the study’s lead author, Daniel Field, the species that lived in water was among the best-studied groups of Mesozoic vertebrate animals. Through the study, the researchers were able to understand that the newborn mosasaurs also lived in oceanic habitats and were likely born in such a setting. The specimens were collected over 100 years ago and were believed to have a relation with ancient marine birds.

The study’s co-author Aaron LeBlanc said the study results have clearly showed that mosasaurs were not laying eggs on beaches and newborn mosasaurs did not live in sheltered nearshore nurseries.

Back in 1764, researchers discovered the first fossilized remains of the giant predators in limestone quarry located in the municipality of Maastricht, which is southeast of the Netherlands.

Researchers have previously conducted many studies on fossils from gigantic marine lizards called mosasaurs, but not much was understood about aspects of their breeding and birth. Mosasaurs lived at the time of the dinosaurs and thrived in ancient seas.

“Truly, the only bird-like function of the specimens is their modest size. Contrary to classic theories, these findings recommend that mosasaurs did not lay eggs on beaches and that newborn mosasaurs probably did not live in sheltered nearshore nurseries”, said Aaron LeBlanc, a doctoral candidate at the University of Toronto at Mississauga.