Thursday, 26 December 2013


Metriorhynchus (meaning “moderate snout”) was an active predator probably preying on fish and smaller marine creatures, it likely spent most if not all of its life in the open ocean. It is estimated that Metriorhynchus may have been able to reach lengths of around 10 feet (3 metres).

It was first discovered in Germany, 1830. Remains of Metriorhynchus have been discovered at various localities across Europe and South America. In the U.K. specimens have been recovered from the famous Oxford clay and is composed of up to 5 different species, with M. superciliosus from the Callovian-Oxfordian, and M. durobrivensis from the Callovian, being the best known. Metriorhynchus also appeared in the Kimmeridgian.

von Meyer, 1830
Meaning of generic name
Moderate Snout
Meaning of specific names
durobrivensis=from Durobrivae. = Latin name for Roman period of Rochester (Latin later Roffa) Superciliosus=browey (supercilium=eye-brow, cilium=eye-lash)
Length: 3 m
Several isolated bones, several complete skeletons
Age and Distribution
Callovian - Kimmeridgian, Europe, South America
Paracrocodylomorpha, Diapsida, Mesoeucrocodylia, Thatlattosuchia, Metriorhynchidae
Further Reading
Andrews CW. 1913. A descriptive catalogue of the marine reptiles of the Oxford Clay, Part Two. London: British Museum (Natural History), 206 pp.
Suchodus Lydekker, 1890 Purranisaurus Rusconi, 1948
Images by Nobu Tamura (click to enlarge)
Metriorhynchus superciliosus, January 15, 2007:
Same, December 7, 2008:

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