Tatenectes

Name: Tatenectes ‭(‬Tate swimmer‭?)‬.
Phonetic: Tate-nes-tes.
Named By: O'Keefe and Wahl‭ ‬-‭ ‬2003.
Synonyms: Cimoliasaurus laramiensis,‭ ‬Tricleidus laramiensis.
Classification: Chordata,‭ ‬Reptilia,‭ ‬Sauropterygia,‭ ‬Plesiosauria,‭ ‬Cryptoclididae,‭ ‬Aristonectidae.
Species: T.‭ ‬laramiensis‭ (‬type‭)‬.
Diet: Piscivore.
Size: Around‭ ‬2‭ ‬meters long.
Known locations: USA,‭ ‬Wyoming‭ ‬-‭ ‬Sundance Formation.
Time period: Oxfordian of the Jurassic.
Fossil representation: Partial skeletal remains and elements of the skull.

       Fossils pertaining to Tatenectes were originally assigned as a species of Cimoliasaurus‭ (‬C.‭ ‬laramiensis‭) ‬by W.‭ ‬C.‭ ‬Knight in‭ ‬1900.‭ ‬Then in‭ ‬1912‭ ‬they were moved over to Tricliedus‭ ‬(as T.‭ ‬laramiensis‭) ‬by Mehl.‭ ‬Then in‭ ‬2003‭ ‬fossils pertaining to this species were established as a new genus by O'Keefe and Wahl.‭ ‬However the original holotype fossils used by knight to name C.‭ ‬laramiensis are‭ ‬now lost and neotypes of partial skeletons‭ (‬UW‭ ‬12543‭ & ‬UW‭ ‬24801‭) ‬are now the established base of this genus.
       Tatenectes was a small plesiosaur with a body proportionately flatter than many other genera.‭ ‬This may have been an environmental adaptation since the Sundance Formation is interpreted as being the bed of a shallow sea during the Jurassic,‭ ‬an area that was probably not suitable for large plesiosaur forms.‭ ‬Tatenectes is usually classified within the Cryptoclididae group of plesiosaurs‭ (‬those like Cryptociedus‭)‬,‭ ‬however there is also occasionally placement within the Aristonectidae‭ (‬those similar to Aristonectes‭) ‬by some researchers.



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