Excavating the ‘Rutland Sea Dragon’

Ichthyosaur skeleton
The 10m long ichthyosaur skeleton found at Rutland Water August 26 2021

A few years ago in January 2021, an almost complete ichthyosaur skeleton was discovered at the Rutland Water Nature Reserve in Leicestershire.  The 10m long skeleton (the largest found in the UK to date) was carefully excavated and studied. Our principal stratigrapher, Phil Copestake, was involved in dating the skeleton using associated microfauna.

The full paper ‘Excavating the ‘Rutland Sea Dragon’: The largest ichthyosaur skeleton ever found in the UK (Whitby Mudstone Formation, Toarcian, Lower Jurassic)’ was published in October last year and describes the full excavation process and preliminary research findings. This interesting read is publicly available for download here.