The findings produced by researchers from museums and universities in Belgium and the UK, such as Southampton University, contradict previous theories that the reptiles were the last survivors from the Cretaceous period (the time span between 145 and 66 million years ago).
Research has shown that the ichthyosaurs appeared during the Triassic and Jurassic period and survived into the Cretaceous which suggests the end of the Jurassic extinction did not occur for the species.
The fact they survived the Jurassic period makes their fossil record unique from other marine reptile groups.
Scientists prove that 'big cats' roamed the countryside
The rediscovery of a mystery animal in a museum’s underground storeroom proves that a non-native ‘big cat’ prowled the British countryside at the turn of the last century.
The animal’s skeleton and mounted skin was analysed by a multi-disciplinary team of scientists and researchers at Southampton, Durham, Bristol, and Aberystwyth universities and found to be a Canadian lynx – a carnivorous predator more than twice the size of a domestic cat.
The research, published today in the academic journal Historical Biology, establishes the animal as the earliest example of an “alien big cat” at large in the British countryside.
A new leader will take the helm of the Royal Navy after senior military chiefs were appointed by Defence Secretary Philip Hammond today. Admiral Sir George Zambellas will succeed Admiral Sir Mark Stanhope as First Sea Lord in April.
The Southampton University graduate began his 33-year Navy career flying helicopters and captained HMS Chatham during the Sierra Leone intervention in 2000, played a leading role in the 1997/98 Strategic Defence Review.
For most of last year he served as the Navy's Fleet Commander as well as commanding Nato maritime operations.
Over three hundred prehistoric clay figurines have been discovered by archaeologists from the University of Southampton.
They were found at a dig site in Greece. It is one of the biggest Neolithic discoveries of its kind in south-eastern Europe.
Archaeologists from the University have already made discoveries elsewhere.
They worked at Portus, an ancient port in Italy, where they discovered a large building used for ship building. That work was carried out alongside the British School of Rome.
Measuring around 150 metres by 60 metres it would have had at least eight bays, 12 meters tall, used for the building and repair of ships in the early second century. It is the only building of its kind discovered anywhere in the world.