Large and compactly-built, pliosaurs swam through the oceans of the dinosaur age, hunting slow-moving prey, usually reptiles. Pliosaurs were thickly-built with four large, flat fins used for moving through water, and blunt, neckless heads on which were large mouths filled with hard teeth strong enough to break through an ice floe. Coated with armor-like scales and ridges, pliosaurs occasionally used their heads to ram into prey underwater, and could jump high distances out of the waters they swam in.
Pliosaurs were among the creatures of the dinosaur era, swimming through Mesozoic waters in the pursuit of prey, going extinct 89 million years ago before the extinction of the non-avian dinosaurs and great reptiles of their age. They were shortnecked plesiosaurs. A single pliosaur, though, named Maelstrom, along with an ichthyosaur named Cretaceous were frozen in the waters they swam in and thawed out in the ice ages, finding prey in that epoch, proving a challenge next to the slower reptiles of their age.
- Ice Age: The Meltdown (First appearance)
Behind the Scenes
- True pliosaurs had longer necks than is shown in Ice Age: The Meltdown, along with a longer crocodilian snout and no plates or scutes on their hides. It more closely resembles a Placodus, a Triassic marine reptile that fed on shellfish.
- The book Ice Age: The Great Escape states that both Cretaceous and Maelstrom were frozen one million years before the events of Ice Age: The Meltdown, but both ichthyosaurs and pliosaurs were extinct for tens of millions of years before the ice ages.