USA, mosasaurs of the ancient Kansas ocean

Platecarpus, a Kansas mosasaur

From the Google cache of Dear Kitty ModBlog:

8/13/05 at 9:03PM

Mood: Looking Playing: Smoke on the waters, by Deep Purple

Sat, Aug. 13, 2005

Fossil hunter publishes love for sea creatures in new book

Associated Press

HAYS, Kan. – Most likely, Mike Everhart lies awake at night, being chased by what would be the Oceans of Kansas equivalent of Tyrannosaurus rex.

Rather than dinosaurs, however, they are mosasaurs, seagoing lizards that rivaled T. rex in terms of sheer size and ferocity.

Of course, that was of a time long ago – about 80 million years – when mosasaurs roamed the Kansas ocean, terrorizing hordes of seagoing creatures and wiping out vast numbers of sharks.

Ironically, Kansas – landlocked as it might be – is able to give Everhart, a Derby paleontologist, a relatively good look into the life of the seagoing lizards.

In fact, northwest Kansas is perhaps the best place on earth to search, discover and learn about mosasaurs.

Thousands of the feared sea creatures have been discovered and today serve as centerpiece exhibits for big museums worldwide, as well as in the United States.

But, mosasaurs – despite how ferociously predatory they were – just aren’t as sexy as dinosaurs, Everhart says.

Nor are they as sexy as plesiosaurs, the stuff that the Loch Ness monster is supposed to be made of – if it existed, of course.

Kansas isn’t quite as sexy as dinosaur bones from Mongolia or other remote locations where Kansas paleontologists have spent much of their time.

Only a small number of people still scour the northwest Kansas countryside in search of fossils.

Some are professional fossil collectors who offer their finds to the highest bidder, and some are university affiliated. That is another war entirely.

Although Everhart is a retired Boeing employee, he is also an adjunct curator of paleontology at Sternberg Museum of Natural History in Hays.

He’s also the owner and developer of the ever-growing Oceans of Kansas Web site.

Mosasaurs ate plesiosaurs: New data on the gut contents of a Tylosaurus proriger (Squamata; Mosasauridae) from the Smoky Hill Chalk of western Kansas: here.

Tylosaurus: here.

Swimming dinosaur in Wyoming: here.

Dinosaur books: here.

Dinosaur classification: here.

6 thoughts on “USA, mosasaurs of the ancient Kansas ocean

  1. Pingback: Mosasaur’s tail bent like ichthyosaur’s | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Pingback: Giant filter-feeding fish of the dinosaur age | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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  4. Pingback: Shell-eating shark from the dinosaur age | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  5. Pingback: Dinosaur age diving bird discovery in Japan | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  6. Pingback: Mosasaur fossils, new study | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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