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New Paper on Strawberry Bank Ichthyosaurs Published

Submitted by Matt on

An academic paper entitled "Ichthyosauria from the Upper Lias of Strawberry Bank, England"  has been published recently, which focuses upon an extensive description of eight remarkably preserved ichthyosaurs from the BRLSI's collection. The paper, by Hannah Cain and Professor Mike Benton of University of Bristol, has been published in the Palaeontological Association’s eminent journal, Palaeontology.
The Ichthyosaurs, once assigned to one species, Stenopterygius hauffianus, are shown to belong to two distinct species, Stenopterygius triscissus and Hauffiopteryx typicus. Furthermore, all eight individuals are juveniles (five specimens) or infants (three specimens), ranging from one-tenth to one-half the normal adult length of the species. These discoveries give us a deeper insight to the ecology of the shallow seas of Lower Jurassic Somerset.
The full article can be found in Palaeontology, Vol. 54, Part 5, 2011, pp. 1069–1093.


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Did you know...

Ever heard of Nelson's Brandy?

Deathly souvenirs are amongst our collections. We have a small bottle of brandy which allegedly is a sample from the liquor Nelson's body was pickled in after the battle of Trafalgar.

Curatorial Curiosities

Mammoth Milk Molar

This milk tooth from a Wooley Mammoth (Mammuthus primigenius) was found in Wookey Hole, Somerset. The mamoth, like its close relatives the extant elephants, had four molars. As the front pair wore down and droped out in pieces, the back pair shifted forward, with two new molars emerging in the back of the mouth. Elephants replace their teeth six times.