One of the most common fears when you go swimming to the beach is to be attacked by a shark. When you go to a river, generally you fear crocs and gators (even if you live in Siberia). Now fuse the animals together and you get a pliosaur. Pliosauroids were the top predators of mesozoic seas. Huge leviathans with enormous croc-like skulls bearing banana-sized teeth, moved by four strong flippers. They look almost like a Lovecraftian creature. Almost, I said. Among them, the most famous is Kronosaurus.
Kronosaurus queenslandicus literally means "Lizard of Kronos". And Kronos was the terrible father of Zeus, who ate his own sons and daughters. And this beast surely deserves that name. We've found traces of tooth marks made by Kronosaurus on the bodies of other plesiosaurs. A carnivore this big could eat anything it wants: from sharks to other marine reptiles, this was the nightmare of Australia's seas.
About the restoration, the first striking thing is that the animal's fat. It lived in (possibly) cold waters, it was killer whale-sized and it was warm-blooded too. And I think it had a lot of blubber like modern cetaceans too. This pliosaur was big. Really big. Not an anorexic top-model for sure. Also, I gave it parasites. Whales (but other sea creatures too) are infested by a lot of little cirripedes and stuff like that, so it's almost sure that ancient marine reptiles had the same problem.
And there is that tail fin. I'm not sure yet, but Cryptocleidus shows us that members of Plesiosauria could have possesed this feature, so I restored Kronosaurus with it. I prefer a sea turtle-like tail but since I'm just starting to understand plesiosaurs' anatomy the fluke could still be possible. Oh well, i can always fix that.
And That's it.
Kronosaurus is an extinct genus of short-necked pliosaur. It was among the largest pliosaurs, and is named after the leader of the Greek Titans, Kronos. Kronosaurus lived in the Early Cretaceous Period (Aptian-Albian). The holotype specimen of the species K. queenslandicus was described by Longman in 1924, and is currently in the Queensland Museum. Hampe described a second species, K. boyacensis, in 1992 from Colombia. Body-length estimates had previously put the total length of Kronosaurus at 12.8 meters. However, a recent study comparing fossil specimens of Kronosaurus to other pliosaurs suggests that the previous estimate was an exaggeration, with the true length probably being only 9–10 meters.
Coloured with Tria Markers, Adobe Photoshop and pencils. Based on bowhead whale, humpback whale and northern right whale dolphin.
References: David Peters and a skeletal of which I can't find the author.
On my blog too (along the black and white version): [link]
Ps: Sorry for the colours' quality. Bad scanner.