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Pronounced (IK-thee-oh-SAWR-us) Ichthyosaurus was, a dolphin-like reptile up to 75 feet long. It could swim at 25 mph (40 kph). Ichthyosaurs had a tall dorsal fin, a half-moon-shaped tail, paddle-like flippers and smooth skin. The nostrils were near the eyes on the top of the head. It had massive ear bones and large eyes, probably giving it acute hearing and sight. These marine reptiles gave birth to live young. Their diet was mostly fish, but also included cephalopods (like belemnites). Hundreds of Ichthyosaurus fossils have been found in England, Germany, Greenland, and Alberta, Canada. They lived during the early Jurassic to the early Cretaceous periods. It was not a dinosaur, but another type of extinct reptile. Ichthyosaurus, which means "fish lizard," was named by Charles Koenig in 1818.
This specimen is 57 x 17 inches.
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