Muzeum Ziemi


150 million-year-old marine reptile fossil found in Poland

Paleontologists at the Museum of the Earth of the Polish Academy of Sciences have found the partial remains of a 152 million-year-old marine reptile—formally known as a pliosaur—in a cornfield. The discovery was made near the village of Krzyżanowice in the NE margin of the Holy Cross Mountains of Poland.

“In Europe, they have been discovered only in a few countries” Daniel Tyborowski from the Museum of the Earth of the Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw, Poland, said in a press release.

A study, published in the Proceedings of the Geologists’ Association, describes the fossilized remains of a surprising assemblage of creatures from the Late Jurassic period, including the skull and teeth fragments from a large pliosaur.

Bones from a long-necked species of plesiosaur belonging to the Elasmosauridae family and teeth from ancient crocodiles were described in the study, along with the shell fragments of ancient turtles.

“Sea turtles ate large snails, while they themselves fell prey to large crocodiles,” said Tyborowski. “We know this because we found teeth marks left by those reptiles on turtle shells. On the other hand, powerful pliosaurs hunted all animals whose fossils we discovered at this site”.

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Fot. Darek Nast