Hugeness in Ancient Aquatic Reptiles

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Although one may think of huge critters when the word dinosaur is mentioned, there was an extreme range of sizes. Some were about the size of turkeys. The large ones were very large indeed, and it seems that scientists naming them are running out of ways to say, "Even bigger yet."

Aquatic lizards like plesiosaurs and ichthyosaurs also had differing sizes. When they went huge, they did it in a big way. Big animals swimming coerces the question, "Did their size cause drag in the water and make locomotion difficult?"

Like some dinosaurs, ichthyosaurs and plesiosaurs grew huge. Scientists tested if that caused problems for swimming, but they were designed for it.
Modified ichthyosaur postage stamp of Yemen, 1990
Through tendentious dating methods, believers in universal common descent evolution and deep time assert that the largest of these appeared (code word for "evolved" even though there is no evidence for their evolution) first, then came the smaller ones. Using flow simulations, studies showed that largeness helped — Ichthyosaurs and plesiosaurs swam quite well. Creationists could easily conclude that they were designed for this.
Ichthyosaurs, whose name means ‘fish lizard’ (ἰχθύς ichthys = fish). These looked superficially like fish or dolphins; only the skeleton shows they were reptilian. They had a wide variety of sizes, from quite small to huge.

Late 19th century artist’s rendering of a plesiosaur (left) and an ichthyosaur
Plesiosaurs, whose name means ‘near lizard’ (πλησίος plēsios = near). They looked nearer to land reptiles than the ichthyosaurs that were discovered not long before. Plesiosaurs had distinctive long necks and long tails. They also had a unique mode of propulsion with powerful flippers—not rowing, but more like ‘flying’ through the water. (So, too, did the short-necked and long-headed pliosaurs.) Some plesiosaurs were among the longest marine reptiles.

To dive into the entire article, visit "Why were ichthyosaurs and plesiosaurs so huge?"