Earth's First Known Giant Monster

Newser World Team
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Skull of Ichthyosaur
Skull of Ichthyosaur measures about Two Meter. This is the largest creature ever inhabited Earth. (Image Credit: Photo by Natalja Kent, courtesy of the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County (NHM)

Discovery of two meter Skull of the giant creature has added a new light in exploration of Marine Life. Two meter skull belongs to a giant species called Ichthyosaur, Which is the largest of all animals ever lived on Earth.

As Dinosaurs ruled the land during esteemed Era, Ichthyosaurs (Not Dinosaurs) ruled ancient waters. Ichthyosaurs developed fins and Hydrodynamic body-shape which is similarly seen in other aquatic animals. Ichthyosaurs inhabited till the age of dinosaurs. 

Fossils of were Ichthyosaurs recovered from the Fossil Hill Member in the Augusta Mountains of Nevada. The well preserved skull, Some parts of Backbone and Fins which belonged to Triassic Era (247 Million - 237 Million Years Ago). Ichthyosaurs named as Cymbospondylus youngorum reached its epic proportion in Triassic Era and is the largest known animals ever discovered from this Era. Term C. Youngorum was named by team of scientists who invented it.

Fossil Hill Member has proved to be a window opening into Triassic Era. Researchers have been excavating Fossil Hill Member since 1920's. Many fossils have been discovered from this site, of which some may be C. Youngorum's prey as well as compititors.

C. Youngorum dived ancient ocean waters nearly 246 Million Years Ago. It started to get bigger only after it developed Fins.
According to the teeth analyzed, Squids and Fishes may be primary food of C. Youngorum. But according to its size it may be feeding on more smaller animals as well.

Ichthyosaur Fossil
Fossil of Skull of C. Youngorum surrounded by plenty of food sources. (Image Credit: Photo by Georg Oleschinski, courtesy of the University of Bonn, Germany)

Through the analysis of data established from fossils, specimen and Environment, There may be some Giant and Heavy competition for this Giant Predator. Due to this competition many of the aquatic life evolved to fast compared to modern creatures.
But some researchers state, Due to large size of C. Youngorum, The number of them will be lower than we censused. This may be a diver for bigger size of Whales.

There are more similarities between Whales and C. Youngorum than just Size. They show similar body shape and plan and both have evolve after extinction. Both whales and C. Youngorum contributed to each other for evolution.

This discovery holds a significant place for studying more evolutionary patterns of ancient life.
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