Scientists at Drumheller’s Royal Tyrrell Museum have unearthed the bones of what could be the biggest prehistoric marine reptile ever found in Alberta.
Led by the museum’s Dr. Don Henderson, a team has recovered what may be the province’s most complete elasmosaur after staff from Korite International made the find at an ammolite mine in southern Alberta.
These flipper-bearing marine creatures lived about 72 million years ago near the end of the cretaceous period when much of Alberta was covered by sea.
The elasmosaur often reached lengths of 12 metre, with much of their body length being taken up by a massive neck.
The elasmosaur had a very tiny head with sharp teeth and a strong jaw that allowed it to capture fish.
According to the Royal Tyrrell Museum, there is a strong possibility the head of the elasmosaur may still be intact, which would provide researchers even more information on how species from this region compare to those worldwide.