Loch Ness monster's ancestor found

2015-01-12 21:26


Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

London - A giant prehistoric reptile that patrolled the waters off Scotland 170 million years ago has been identified by scientists, they said on Monday.

The creatures, which resembled a menacing dolphin and grew up to 4m long, were identified by fossils from the Isle of Skye in northwest Scotland.

A team led by Edinburgh University scientists have named the new species Dearcmhara shawcrossi in honour of Brian Shawcross, an amateur fossil collector who gathered many of the fossils in 1959.

These were later donated to a museum, allowing scientists to study them and identify the new species.

"During the time of dinosaurs, the waters of Scotland were prowled by big reptiles the size of motor boats," said Steve Brusatte of Edinburgh University's School of GeoSciences.

"Their fossils are very rare and only now, for the first time, we've found a new species that was uniquely Scottish."

Scotland's most famous reptile, real or imaginary, is the Loch Ness monster, the myth of which draws thousands of visitors a year to Loch Ness in northern Scotland.

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.