Researchers have announced that Predator X, a marine reptile that inhabited the seas during the Jurassic period about 150 million years ago, is a new species and has been given the name Pliosaurus funkei. The sea monster had a body that spanned about 40 feet and had a massive 6.5-foot-long skull. Predator X had a powerful bite which was estimated to be four times as powerful as Tyrannosaurus rex.
Patrick Druckenmiller, the co-author of the study which classified and named Predator X said,
“They were the top predators of the sea. They had teeth that would have made a T. rex whimper.”
The history of the finding of the giant fossils which helped identify Predator X started in 2006 when scientists in Norway unearthed to skeletons of giant pliosaurs. The creatures looked different form other pliosaurs at the time. The two students who found the skeletons Bjorn and May-Liss Funke were who the new species was named after.
Druckenmiller told LiveScience that the pliosaurs roamed the seas roughly 145-160 million years ago and had four large paddle shaped fins which enabled the to fly through the water.
The Pliosaurus funkei fossils were just two of nearly 40 specimens discovered at the Svalbard, Norway site. In the Oct. 12 issue of the Norwegian Journal of Geology, scientists also describe two new ichthyosaurs, the longest-necked plesiosaur on record, and several invertebrates. The discoveries help to paint a picture of an arctic sea that was full of viscous predators, each hunting each other with deadly accuracy said John Hurum, another of the study’s authors in an e-mail.
“It’s not just that we found a new species, we’ve been discovering a whole ecosystem,”