Name: Pistosaurus.
Phonetic: Piss-toe-sore-us.
Named By: Meyer‭ ‬-‭ ‬1839.
Classification: Chordata,‭ ‬Reptilia,‭ ‬Sauropterygia,‭ ‬Pistosauroidea.
Species: P.‭ ‬longaevus‭ (‬type‭)‬,‭ ‬P.‭ ‬grandaevus.
Diet: Piscivore.
Size: Around‭ ‬3‭ ‬meters long.
Known locations: Europe.
Time period: Anisian to Ladinian of the Triassic.
Fossil representation: ‭At least two individuals.

       Although neither a nothosaur nor a plesiosaur,‭ ‬Pistosaurus appears to be closely related to both.‭ ‬Pistosaurus had both a stiffened spine and limbs adapted into flippers,‭ ‬but still retained a palate like a nothosaur and for this reason Pistosaurus‭ ‬is often considered an evolutionary offshoot of a type that appeared alongside plesiosaurs while still being‭ ‬from them.‭ ‬However in light of the current lack of pistosauroid sauropterygian fossils compared to the large number of plesiosaurs it seems that these types of marine reptiles were not as successful in the long term.
       Pistosaurus is the type genus of the Pistosauridae and was the only member of this group until the discovery of Augustasaurus in‭ ‬1997.


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