Scientific classification
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
clade: †Thalassophonea
Genus: †Pliosaurus

Pliosaurus (meaning more lizard - pseudonymed as Predator X) was a genus of large carnivorous marine reptiles, belonging to the family Pliosauridae. Pliosaurus lived during the Late Jurassic Period and lived off of a diet of fish, squids and other marine reptiles. The genus once consisted of many species but has been cut down to only four, P. brachydeirus, P. funkei, P. macromerus, and P. portentificus. Pliosaurus was a large late jurassic oceanic macro-carnivore. This beast was probably at the top of the food chain wherever it went due to its huge size of 10 to 13 metres and huge, powerful jaws with its rosette of large teeth at the tip of its snout.

Pliosaurus funkei, formerly the Svalbard Pliosaur which was codenamed Predator X by the team that discovered it, was discovered in February 2008 by a group of researchers from the University of Oslo, lead by the famous Norwegian paleontologist, Dr. Jørn Hurum of the Natural History Museum at the University of Oslo. This massive creature's total body length was about 10-13 meters (33-43 feet.). The Svalbard Pliosaur was one of the largest pliosaurs ever found. Like all pliosaurs, it was a carnivorous marine reptile that fed on fish and other plesiosaurs. This specimen was anatomically the same as most pliosaurs. It mostly resembles the Kronosaurus, but it was much larger. It is possible that we will find bigger specimens in the future.

Pliosaurus would have swam at quite a slow pace but it would have been a very powerful swimmer similar to whales of today. It may or may not have been countershaded like the great white shark today. This means that it would have been dark on top to blend in with the oceans dark depths and light on the underside to blend in with the bright sunlit surface. This would have enabled it to sneak up on its unsuspecting prey then take a great bite into its prey which would have inevitably spelled the end for it. Pliosaurus would have had a very big bite force because of its relatively short neck, massive head, big snout and great weight. This bite force would have enabled it to go for armoured prey like ammonites.

n the media

  • Pliosaurus funkei was featured in the fourth episode of the documentary Planet Dinosaur under it's nickname Predator X. It hunted a pod of Kimmerosaurus several times before finally succeeding in killing one.

Predator X - Planet Dinosaur - Episode 4 - BBC One


Predator X - Most powerful marine reptile ever - Planet Dinosaur - BBC



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