[ Back to EurekAlert! ]

Contact: Johan Lindgren
johan.lindgren@geol.lu.se
46-768-541-491
Lund University

Leatherback Turtle, Mosasaur and Ichthyosaur

Caption: Preserved pigment in fossilized skin from a leatherback turtle, a mosasaur and an ichthyosaur suggests that these animals were, at least partially, dark-colored in life -- an example of convergent evolution. Note that the leatherback turtle and mosasaur have a dark back and light belly (a color scheme also known as countershading), whereas the ichthyosaur, similar to the modern deep-diving sperm whale, is uniformly dark-colored.

Credit: Illustration by Stefan Sølberg

Usage Restrictions: None

Related news release: Fossil pigments reveal the colors of ancient sea monsters


[ Back to EurekAlert! ]