Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. 24/7 Space News .

New Ichthyosaur Graveyard Found
by Staff Writers
Boulder CO (SPX) Jun 09, 2014

Section of ichthyosaur-bearing sediment unit at Tyndall ice field. For a larger version of this image please go here.

In a new study published in the Geological Society of America Bulletin, geoscientists Wolfgang Stinnesbeck of the University of Heidelberg and colleagues document the discovery of forty-six ophthalmosaurid ichthyosaurs (marine reptiles).

These specimens were discovered in the vicinity of the Tyndall Glacier in the Torres del Paine National Park of southern Chile. Among them are numerous articulated and virtually complete skeletons of adults, pregnant females, and juveniles.

Preservation is excellent and occasionally includes soft tissue and embryos. The skeletons are associated with ammonites, belemnites, inoceramid bivalves, and fishes as well as numerous plant remains.

The enormous concentration of ichthyosaurs is unique for Chile and South America and places the Tyndall locality among the prime fossil Lagerstatten for Early Cretaceous marine reptiles worldwide.

Four different species have been identified. Both concentration and diversity of ichthyosaurs are unique for South America and place the Tyndall locality among the prime fossil Lagerstatten marine reptiles worldwide.

The deposit is Early Cretaceous in age (about 146 million years ago) and forms part of a deep water sequence located in the Rocas Verdes Basin, a straight separating Antarctica and South America from Late Jurassic to late Early Cretaceous times.

The Tyndall ichthyosaurs were gregarious and likely hunted in packs in a submarine canyon near the east coast of this sea. Their potential prey, belemnites and small fishes, were abundant due to plankton blooms caused by cold water upwelling.

Occasionally, high energy turbiditic mudflows sucked down everything in their reach, including ichthyosaurs. Inside the suspension flows, the air-breathing reptiles lost orientation and finally drowned. They were instantly buried in the abyss at the bottom of the canyon.

A Lower Cretaceous ichthyosaur graveyard in deep marine slope channel deposits at Torres del Paine National Park, Southern Chile; W. Stinnesbeck et al., Institut fur Geowissenschaften, Ruprecht-Karls-Universitat Heidelberg, Im Neuenheimer Feld 234-236, 69221 Heidelberg, Germany.


Related Links
Geological Society of America
Explore The Early Earth at

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Paleontologists dig up remains of ancient giant crocodile
Cerrejon, Colombia (UPI) Jun 4, 2013
Even Happy Gilmore wouldn't stand a chance against Balrog, the ancient croc named for the Mines of Moria monster in Tolkien's Lord of the Rings. Perhaps no one would stand a chance against the ancient 16-foot, 900-pound croc, whose remains were discovered in an open-pit coal mine - one of the world's largest - in Cerrejon, Colombia. Balrog - or more scientifically, Anthracosuchus bal ... read more

NASA Missions Let Scientists See Moon's Dancing Tide From Orbit

Earth's gravitational pull stretches moon surface

Water in moon rocks provides clues and questions about lunar history

NASA Invites Public to Select Favorite Moon Image for Lunar Orbiter Anniversary Collection

LDSD Testing for Large Payloads to Mars

New Mars Lander to Probe Interior of Red Planet

A habitable environment on Martian volcano

Mars Curiosity rover may have transported Earth bacteria to Mars

German village takes digital fate into own hands

Smart lifestyle takes centre stage at Asia tech show

SpaceX founder unveils his 'future of space travel' capsule

First Phase To Certify New US Space Transport System Completed

Chinese lunar rover alive but weak

China's Jade Rabbit moon rover 'alive but struggling'

Chinese space team survives on worm diet for 105 days

Moon rover Yutu comes closer to public

Russian Soyuz with New Crew Docks at ISS in Automatic Mode

Russian, German and US astronauts dock with ISS

Six-Person Station Crew Enjoys Day Off Following Docking

ESA astronaut Alexander Gerst arrives at ISS

Roscosmos Scolded for 'Pestering Society' with Proton Crash Theories

SpaceX unveils capsule to ferry astronauts to space

Elon Musk to present manned DragonV2 spacecraft on May 29

Russia puts satellite in orbit from sea platform after 2013 flop

'Godzilla' of Earths circles distant star

Why Does Earth Have No Super-Earth Cousins?

Astronomers identify signature of Earth-eating stars

Starshade Could Help Photograph Distant Planets

Intel's gesture control promises hands-free life at Taiwan show

Analyzing Resistance to Impacts and Improving Armor Plating

Google working on 3D motion-sensing tablet

Russia preparing to launch Okno space surveillance system at full capacity

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.