7 December 2017

Winter lecture: Sore tales of giant pliosaurs

The pliosaur was a fearsome predator with enormous teeth and powerful jaws, patrolling the late Jurassic seas of south west England.

The two Pliosaurus species displayed in Bristol Museum & Art Gallery were local residents from Westbury, Wiltshire, alive about 155 million years ago.

Amazingly, both fossils show signs of disease and injury (palaeopathologies), which clearly reflect significant life events, all of those millions of years ago.

These rare specimens show how diseases in fossil animals can help reconstruct ancient life histories and even instill a deep sense of empathy in ourselves. Over the expanse of deep time, we humans can feel their pain.

Speaker: Dr Judyth Sassoon, University of Bristol

Please note, the winter lectures take place at Priory Road Lecture Theatre. Parking can be difficult so please arrive an extra 15 minutes to allow plenty of time.