7ft fossil of prehistoric reptile discovered
London: A 7-foot-long, fossilised skeleton of an extinct carnivorous marine reptile has been discovered in the UK.
Jonathan Bow, an amateur fossil hunter unearthed the ichthyosaur on a beach in south Wales.
“Something this large and complete is a once in a lifetime find,” said Bow, a computer programmer in Swansea.
Experts believe the discovery could be a “very, very important find,” BBC News reported.
Other fossils from the Jurassic period have been unearthed in the area, dating back 200 million years.
Bow said that an inch-long piece of rock caught his attention on a changing tide in September.
It took Bow and his brother a day to expose the fossil in about 60kg of stone.
Ichthyosaurs (fish lizards) were predatory reptiles that swam the world’s oceans while dinosaurs walked the land.
The creatures died out around 25 million years before the extinction event that wiped out the dinosaurs and were replaced by plesiosaurs, a long necked marine reptile.