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Giant "Lizard Fish" Emerges in UK, Terrifies Locals

Biggest Marine Reptile Ever Found!

A monstrous marine predator from the past has emerged from the cliffs of Somerset, UK. Scientists have pieced together the remains of a gigantic ichthyosaur, a marine reptile that lived 200 million years ago, and estimate it to be the largest ever discovered.

Sea Monster Unearthed, Giants of the Triassic Seas

This newfound ichthyosaur species, named Ichthyotitan severnensis (meaning "giant lizard fish of the Severn"), was identified from a series of jawbone fragments discovered between 2020 and 2022 on a beach in Blue Anchor. The researchers estimate the creature's jawbone alone to be a staggering 6.5 feet (2 meters) long, suggesting a total body length of around 82 feet (25 meters) – roughly the length of two city buses!

Ichthyosaurs were dominant predators during the Mesozoic Era (251.9 million to 66 million years ago), though not actually dinosaurs themselves. They resembled dolphins in appearance and shared similar adaptations for life in the water.

A Time of Upheaval

Interestingly, the fossils were found alongside rocks indicating earthquakes and tsunamis, suggesting this colossal creature lived during a period of intense volcanic activity that may have contributed to the mass extinction event at the end of the Triassic period.

This discovery dethrones the previous contender for the largest marine reptile title, another ichthyosaur called Shonisaurus sikanniensis, which reached lengths of up to 69 feet (21 meters).

Not Alone, But the Last of its Kind

Another similar ichthyosaur fossil was found nearby in 2016, suggesting these giants may have shared the same habitat. However, Ichthyotitan severnensis is likely one of the last of its kind, as ichthyosaurs eventually gave way to plesiosaurs during the Cretaceous period.

This remarkable discovery sheds light on the incredible diversity and size of creatures that once ruled the oceans.