Museum Keichousaurus Mass Mortality with Fish Fossil

Keichousaurus hui

Class Sauropsida, Superorder Sauropterygia, Order Nothosauroidea, Suborder Pachypleurosauria

Geological Time: Triassic

Size: The plate size is 58.4 x 67.3 cm (23 x 26.5 inches) and individual Keichousaurus fossils range from 15.2 to 24.1 cm (6- 9.5”) in length. The Sinoeugnathus fish is 19.6 cm (7.75”) in length. The lengths of the fossils were determined by their in-situ positions, not as if they were outstretched. The plate weighs in at a hefty 34 pounds

Fossil Site: Huixia Fossil Beds, Guanglin, Guizhou Province, China

Fossil Code: PFV353

Price: Sold

Nothosauroid FossilsDescription: Recently I had the good fortune of purchasing two large Keichousaurus mortality plates from a long-standing collection that was being liquidated. These plates were acquired by the owner years before the ban on Keichousaurus was instituted by the Chinese government.

The plate has seven Keichousaurus specimens preserved, three dorsal (top), three ventral (bottom) and one that I cannot discern. One can easily ascertain this by looking at the skull. The dorsal specimens show the upper skull and more bone detail. The ventral specimens are shown as the bottom part of the skull outline with no interior features visible. There is also a large partial Sinoeugnathus fish on the plate. The fossils are based in a mudstone type matrix with calcite intrusions that look straight thick white lines. This is a normal occurrence one expects to find in these fossil beds. Notice the beautiful aesthetics of the plate, a Triassic case of life imitating art.

Imagine being able to afford a swimming reptile mortality plate of this magnitude from the Triassic. Until about four years ago individual Keichousaurus were relatively available on the world market. The Chinese authorities have since prohibited the export of almost all vertebrate fossils. Accordingly, this is a good time to acquire one of these truly impressive plates before they become virtually impossible to obtain. Moreover, and without equivocation, this is the finest Keichousaurus fossil I have ever seen.

The mortality plate will display well as is, or with a quality frame to fit your taste and decor. Obviously this is a centerpiece specimen suitable as a wall hanging, large decorative table piece, or whatever imaginative display idea you may have. Finally, don’t forget accent and spot lighting of this plate, it will make a world of difference. F.Y.I., the plate weighs in at a hefty 34 pounds.

A word about the photography. The Keichousaurus plates were shot using a 39 megapixel digital Hasselblad H2 series with 150mm and 65mm lenses. Both nomal jpeg and high resolution images are linked below.

Keichousaurus is a genus of predator marine reptile in the pachypleurosaur family tht went extinct at the close of the Triassic. The name comes from Kweichow (now Guizhou Province) in China where the first fossil specimen was discovered in 1957. They are among the most common sauropterygian fossils recovered and are often found as nearly complete, articulated skeletons, making them popular among collectors. Keichousaurus, and the pachypleurosaur family broadly, are sometimes classified within Nothosauroidea, but are otherwise listed as a separate, more primitive lineage within Sauropterygia. Keichousaurus did not suvive the Triassic-Jurassic extinction event.

Keichousaurs, were highly specialized for an aquatic environment, a characteristic of all sauropterygians; this is evidenced by their feet having five webbed toes. Members of the genus ranged from some 15 to 30 cm long, including their long necks and tails. The pointy head with sharp teeth suggest they made their living eating fishes. Some recovered specimens feature an especially developed ulna suggesting they may have spent some time on land or in marshes. Science believe they were ovoviviparous with eggs that hatched within the uterus.

Fossil Purchase Information

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