(named after a type of Ancient greek sword/large knife, with a
backwards curving blade).
Named By: V. Fischer, M. S. Arkhangelsky, I. M. Stenshin, G. N. Uspensky, N. G. Zverkov & R. B. J. Benson - 2015.
Classification: Chordata, Reptilia, Sauropterygia, Plesiosauria, Pliosauridae, Brachaucheninae?
Species: M. rossica (type).
Size: Uncertain due to lack of remains, but very roughly estimated to be about 5 meters long.
Known locations: Russia, Ulyanovsk Oblast.
Time period: Hauterivian of the Cretaceous.
Fossil representation: Tips of upper and lower jaws, as well as partial dorsal (back) vertebrae and partial pelvic bones.
is a genus of pliosaur
that lived in waters that once submerged parts
of Russia during the early Cretaceous. Due to lack of fossil
material, little is known about the overall details of Makhaira.
But these remains seem to have come from a small to medium sized
pliosaur. The known teeth of Makhaira seem to
suggest that Makhaira
was more of a generalist, capable of hunting moderately sized prey of
all types, without overly specialising on any one specific type of
Makhaira has in the past been cautiously identified as a brachauchenine pliosaur, though overall lack of fossils have made this assessment uncertain. However, in 2017 an additional genus of brachauchenine pliosaur named Luskhan was described from fossils recovered from the same region of Russia that the Makhaira type fossils were recovered from.
- Peculiar macrophagous adaptations in a new Cretaceous pliosaurid. Royal Society Open Science 2(150552). - V. Fischer, M. S. Arkhangelsky, I. M. Stenshin, G. N. Uspensky, N. G. Zverkov & R. B. J. Benson - 2015.