"Fans of Scotland's mythical Loch Ness Monster, or Nessie, will be thrilled by the discovery of the remains of a massive look-alike elasmosaurus. Measuring 36 feet long (11 meters), from snout to tail, it is the largest specimen of the four-flippered sea giants — which inhabited Earth between 55 to 66 million years ago — on record.
"Not only is it quite long, it's also quite stocky and weighed nearly 15 tons (13.4 metric tons) when it was alive, making it the heaviest-known elasmosaurid," said study lead researcher José O'Gorman, a vertebrate paleontologist at the La Plata Museum and the National University of La Plata in Argentina. Before the latest find, the ancient marine animal's heaviest specimen discovered weighed 5 tons!
The elasmosaurus, which lay undisturbed on Antarctica's Seymour Island for centuries, was first discovered in 1989 by Dr. William Zinsmeister, a professor at Indiana's Purdue University. Lacking the resources to unearth the fossil, he informed the Argentina Antarctic Institute about the discovery. But the beast's size and rocky bed made it impossible for the South American paleontologists to extract the remains in a single expedition. Also, the digs, which could only be conducted in January and February during the Antarctica "summer," did not happen some years due to weather conditions and limited resources. It was not until 2017 that the researchers finally managed to excavate the massive creature's almost complete skeleton and begin a detailed analysis."
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