New Poster for Jurassic World Features Huge Mosasaur

In a bid to show movie goers new monsters in the fourth instalment of the “Jurassic Park” franchise, a marine reptile is to be included in “Jurassic World”.  The marine reptile featured is a Mosasaur, a member of the Squamata Order of reptiles (lizards and snakes), that according to the film makers at least, is absolutely huge.  Everything Dinosaur team members have already written about the Mosasaurus seen in the trailer for the forthcoming blockbuster.  In that article, we did point out that this prehistoric reptile seems to have been subjected to some form of Hollywood “size ray”, as it was many times bigger than the fossil record seems to suggest.

However, big teeth and jaws (no pun intended) put bottoms onto cinema seats so the Mosasaurus has been beefed up to a considerable extent.  The Great White shark eating exploits of this sea monster (as seen in the trailer), are illustrated once again in the latest poster release to promote “Jurassic World”.  In the poster, a little boy looks on whilst the super-sized Mosasaurus in its huge aquarium pursues a Great White, with seemingly only one winner likely.

The Latest Jurassic World Poster

Huge Mosasaur about to tackle "jaws".

Huge Mosasaur about to tackle “jaws”.

Picture Credit: Universal Studios

It is a very dramatic image and we appreciate the illustration of the ptyerygoid teeth, but even the largest genus of Tylosaurinae we know, (Hainosaurus) was nowhere near the size of the reptile shown in the poster.  Perhaps in captivity with all the genetic “jiggery pokery” that has gone on, the scientists managed to create a colossal marine reptile, far bigger than any, as yet described species known from the fossil record.

To read the earlier article by Everything Dinosaur on the “Jurassic World”  Mosasaurus: The Mighty Mosasaurus – A Little Too Mighty?

No doubt the diverse Super Family Mosasauroidea evolved into a myriad of forms.  This group of lizards, whose closest extant relatives include the Monitor Lizards, dominated life in marine environments for the last twenty million years or so of the Cretaceous.  Many types were the apex predators in their ecosystems, with some specimens estimated to have reached lengths in excess of 12 metres.  Indeed, a number of palaeontologists have cited much larger size estimates, for example Tylosaurus proriger could have been in excess of fourteen metres long.  Mosasaurus hoffmanni may have been thirteen metres long although estimates of up to seventeen metres have been given for some Mosasaur genera.

The Beautifully Detailed CollectA Mosasaurus Model

Fearsome marine predator from CollectA.

Fearsome marine predator from CollectA.

Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur

Many types of Mosasaur were formidable, general predators.  Bones of prey recovered from the body cavities of specimens include turtles, sharks, other marine reptiles and even the bones from a giant, flightless bird Hesperornis.  It is likely that the largest of these marine reptiles would have attacked and eaten sharks, even sharks as formidable as the “Cretaceous Great White” – Cretoxyrhina (C. mantelli), which grew up to seven metres long.  Mosasaurs did not have it all their own way, large sharks such as Cretoxyrhina would have also preyed upon smaller Mosasaurs.  A number of  Mosasaur specimens have been collected from Kansas, which represent fauna of the Western Interior Seaway, many bones show extensive Cretoxyrhina bite marks and these have been interpreted as evidence of predator/prey interaction as well as scavenging on the carcases by sharks.

To view the CollectA Mosasaurus model and other marine reptiles: CollectA Prehistoric Animal Models

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