Fun Rhomaleosaurus Facts For Kids

Ayan Banerjee
Feb 29, 2024 By Ayan Banerjee
Originally Published on Sep 24, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
Fact-checked by Sonali Rawat
Rhomaleosaurus facts include that it hunted its prey by their smell and can also detect their direction before having any visual.
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Age: 3-18
Read time: 6.3 Min

Rhomaleosaurus is one of the largest marine reptiles among the species of sauropterygia plesiosauria. The fossils of Rhomaleosaurus were found near Yorkshire, England. The fossil specimen was first kept in the Dublin museum and was described by Alexander Carte and W. H. Bailey as a new species of the genus sauropterygia. In the later years, Harry G. Seeley studied the specimen and declared it as a new genus Rhomaleosaurus. The name Rhomaleosaurus depicts the meaning 'strong lizard'. It is a maritime predator that feeds on fishes, and marine animals. It hunted its pillage by their smell, it filled its skull with water by forcing it inside. This adaptation helped them to hunt their pillage and trace their direction before even seeing them. The life of the lizard predator is described on the basis of the fossil study at the museum. Pliosaurs have a resemblance to the earlier Nothosauridae, which looked like a crocodile and used all four arms to propel in and out of the water as they were also reptiles. The remains of the Rhomaleosaurus are now showcased at the natural history museum in London in the British United Kingdom where recently with collaboration with google arts they have resurrected Rhomaleosaurus virtually. The climate of the Mesozoic era for the sea was recreated in virtual reality so that the visitors of the natural history museum could witness the sea dragon in its original form.

To know more about these ancient creatures read about Macroplata and Kaiwhekea. 

Rhomaleosaurus Interesting Facts

Was the Rhomaleosaurus a dinosaur?

Rhomaleosaurus was among the early Jurassic marine reptiles which prey on marine animals and were of huge size. They cannot be categorized completely as dinosaurs.

How do you pronounce 'Rhomaleosaurus'?

Rhomaleosaurus is pronounced as ‘Roh-mein-lay-oh-sorr-us’.The name Rhomaleosaurus depicts the meaning 'strong lizard'.

What type of marine reptile was a Rhomaleosaurus?

The Rhomaleosaurus cramptoni was a pliosaur that happened to live in the deep marine regions and fed upon other small plesiosaurus.

In which geological period did the Rhomaleosaurus live?

Rhomaleosaurus was of the early Jurassic period, which was also known as the Toarcian age (182.7 to 174.1 million years ago) and lived about 183 to 175.6 million years ago. This epoch was known to be the first of the three Jurassic periods.

When did the Rhomaleosaurus become extinct?

The species of plesiosaurus became extinct 180-177 million years ago. It is a marine reptile of the Toarcian age believed to be living in Yorkshire.

Where did a Rhomaleosaurus live?

Rhomaleosaurus was a marine reptile of the plesiosauria species from the early Jurassic period from Yorkshire in the United Kingdom. It is not confirmed if they were endemic to a certain location.

What was a Rhomaleosaurus' habitat?

Rhomaleosaurus was a marine reptile and was an aggressive hunter in the seas which can be gathered from the fossil found in 1848 in Alum quarry in Yorkshire, England.

Who did a Rhomaleosaurus live with?

The Rhomaleosaurus are large sea reptiles just like the sharks in today's marine ecosystem. Not much has been discovered about its territorial behavior from the fossil specimens.

How long did a Rhomaleosaurus live?

The type species of plesiosaur that became obsolete 177-180 million years ago are said to have survived for at least 65 million years due to a substantial increase in their population.

How did they reproduce?

They reproduce by giving birth to young ones and not by laying eggs, just like a plesiosaur. This is evident from the fact that a skeleton of a pregnant Rhomaleosaurus was found. A juvenile Rhomaleosauridae was found inside an adult's skeleton fossils. Before the finding, scientists believed that the sea dragon was too cumbersome to come outside water to lay eggs, so maybe they gave birth to young ones. The fossils are the first direct evidence of the reproductive manner of the plesiosaurus, according to paleontologist Adam Smith.

Rhomaleosaurus Fun Facts

What did a Rhomaleosaurus look like?

Rhomaleosaurus size is 275 in (7 m). It is a giant carnivore plesiosaur that preys on fish, dinosaurs, and other marine animals. It has a long neck and is considered one of the largest pliosaur of the early Jurassic period. Its teeth are suited to prey on small fishes.

The fossils are the first direct evidence of the reproductive manner of the plesiosaurus according to paleontologist Adam Smith

How many bones did a Rhomaleosaurus have?

Plesiosaur in general had 232 bones and a skull. The fossils discovered altogether comprised 600 pieces of bones which were combined to unravel the anatomy of plesiosaurs.

How did they communicate?

They did not have any special way of communicating or signaling their pack according to the references.

How big was a Rhomaleosaurus?

Rhomaleosaurus was a giant Plesiosauria clade dinosaur with a long neck and a skull. They are the largest among their species. Its length is 275 in (7 m). It is bigger than most maritime creatures like a megamouth shark.

How fast could a Rhomaleosaurus move?

Rhomaleosaurus cramptoni was a cumbersome marine reptile and thus cannot swim very fast. But their movement is swift enough to catch their pillage. It hunted its prey by their smell, it filled its skull with water by forcing it inside. This adaptation helped them to hunt their pillage and trace their direction before even seeing them.

How much did a Rhomaleosaurus weigh?

The Rhomaleosaurus weight is 10 t (9072 kg). It is the largest pliosaur of the Toarcian age. It has a long neck and a giant body and a skull.

What were the male and female names of the species?

There is no specific name for the male and female specimens of the species of plesiosaur. No differences have been discovered between the male and female specimens.

What would you call a baby Rhomaleosaurus?

A baby Rhomaleosaurus cramptoni is not called by any specific name. It is known from the fossils in the natural history museum that the species R .cramptoni reproduced by giving birth to young ones, unlike most dinosaurs. It is believed that they were too cumbersome to come out of the sea to lay eggs and thus gave birth to young ones underwater.

What did they eat?

These marine reptiles are carnivores in nature. They prey on fish, cephalopods, ichthyosaurs, and ammonites. It hunted its prey by their smell, it filled its skull with water by forcing it inside. This adaptation helped them to hunt their prey and trace their direction before even seeing them. The anatomy of their teeth as observed from the fossil specimens was suited to prey on small marine organisms and not for tearing out pieces from big creatures.

How aggressive were they?

Rhomaleosaurus cramptoni is the largest of Sauropterygia, Plesiosauria clade. The name Rhomaleosaurus depicts the meaning 'strong lizard'. They are aggressive predators belonging to the genera of plesiosaurs. They feed on marine organisms, which can be concluded from the skeleton and teeth discovered in Yorkshire, England.

Did you know...

Plesiosaurs have a resemblance to the earlier Nothosauridae, which looked like a crocodile and used all four arms to propel in and out of the water as they were also reptiles.

The fossil specimen found in the British United Kingdom as observed by paleontologist Roger Benson in the museum of the species R .cramptoni describes that they lived in the marine ecosystem.

Where were the Rhomaleosaurus' bones found?

The bones of the species R .cramptoni were found in an Alum quarry in Kettleness around Whitby in the British United Kingdom. The fossil specimen was first kept in the Dublin museum and was described by Alexander Carte and W. H. Bailey as a new species of the genus plesiosaurus. In the later years, Harry G. Seeley studied the specimen and declared it as a new genus Rhomaleosaurus.

What was the biggest plesiosaur?

The biggest plesiosaur is the Elasmosaurus. The size of this reptile is estimated to be around 34 ft (10.3 m).

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly prehistoric animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these Cretoxyrhina fun facts or Metriorhynchus facts for kids.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable Rhomaleosaurus coloring pages.

The first image is by Nobu Tamara and the second image is by Emőke Dénes.

Rhomaleosaurus Facts

What Did They Prey On?

Fish, cephalopods, ichthyosaurs, ammonites

what Type of Animal were they?

Carnivores

Average Litter Size?

N/A

What Did They Look Like?

N/A

How Much Did They Weigh?

20000 lb (9072 kg)

Skin Type

Scales

How Long Were They?

276 in (7 m)

How Tall Were They?

N/A

Kingdom

Animalia

Class

Reptilia

Genus

Rhomaleosaurus

Family

Rhomaleosauridae

Scientific Name

Rhomaleosaurus cramptoni

What Were Their Main Threats?

Natural disasters

What Habitat Did They Live In?

Oceans

Where Did They Live?

England
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Written by Ayan Banerjee

Bachelor of Science specializing in Nautical Science

Ayan Banerjee picture

Ayan BanerjeeBachelor of Science specializing in Nautical Science

Thanks to his degree in nautical science from T.S. Chanakya, IMU Navi Mumbai Campus, Ayan excels at producing high-quality content across a range of genres, with a strong foundation in technical writing. Ayan's contributions as an esteemed member of the editorial board of The Indian Cadet magazine and a valued member of the Chanakya Literary Committee showcase his writing skills. In his free time, Ayan stays active through sports such as badminton, table tennis, trekking, and running marathons. His passion for travel and music also inspire his writing, providing valuable insights.

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