Nessie may not have been real, but this big sea monster was.
This week, National Museums Scotland unveiled fossilized remains of, what is being called as, “one of the crown jewels” of fossils found in Scotland.
Feast your eyes on an ichthyosaur known as the Storr Lochs Monster: (via GeoBeats News)
About 170 million years ago, in the Middle Jurassic period, this dolphin-like creature was about 13 feet long and had hundreds of teeth in its mouth. According to the museum, this specimen “is the most complete skeleton of a sea-living reptile from the Age of the Dinosaurs that has ever been found in Scotland.”
(Conserver Nigel Larkin prepping up the fossil for display)
Paleontologist Steve Brusatte of the University of Edinburgh’s School of Geosciences says, “People don’t realize that real life sea monsters used to exist.” Brusatte worked on the fossil and added, “They were bigger, scarier and more fascinating than the myth of Nessie.”
National Geographic reported that the fossil was actually discovered 50 years ago in Skye, but much of it was embedded rock. Instead of pulling out the creature from the embedded rock, and risk damaging it, the fossil was kept in storage.
But now, the University of Edinburgh, National Museums Scotland, and energy company SSE joined forces to pull the fossil off from the rock.
Brusatte stated, “Their bones are exceptionally rare in Scotland, which makes this specimen one of the crown jewels of Scottish fossils. It’s all thanks to the keen eye of an amateur collector that this remarkable fossil was ever found in the first place, which goes to show that you don’t need an advanced degree to make huge scientific discoveries.”
According to The Huffington Post, the fossil will be studied by scientists, then put on display.
Phillip Acevedo (Axial Skeleton Founder)