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Lariosaurus: It appears that at least this genus of nothosaur was viviparous (able to bear live young). Several skeletons have been found associated with embryos indicating that they carried their young to maturity in their bodies. In one specimen two juvenile placodonts of the genus Cyatnodus have been found in the stomach area, a clue to the diet of this nothosaur. Much of our modern knowledge of nothosaurs comes from the work of Dr Olivier Ricppel of the Field Museum in Chicago, the present day specialist in these uniquely Triassic marine reptiles.




Features: The primitive features of this small nothosaur include the short neck and toes. The back legs are five-toed with claws, and slightly webbed. The front legs are adapted into paddles. Both pairs of legs are quite short and do not give the impression of powerful swimming structures.


The front legs are stronger than the hind, suggestingthat they were the main swimming organs, unlikein the pachypleurosaurs. Fangs at the front ofthe broad head interlock as the jawsare closed, forming a vicioustrap for catching fishand other aquaticanimals.


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