Science, Art, Litt, Science based Art & Science Communication


The ophtalmosaurus was sold close to its estimate: 180 K € including fees.


The differentiation of animal species is activated by the mechanism of genic mutation, and lasts for several hundreds of millions of years. Most mutations are lethal, but some allow the development of organs best suited to the environment.

The reptile was a great achievement which led the invasion of land by vertebrates. 150 million years ago, at the time of the dinosaurs, other giant reptiles known as ichthyosaurs used the flexible look of a dolphin or shark to return to the sea. Ichthyosaurs enjoyed great success as they spread across the globe.

Among them, the ophtalmosaurus chose to develop his vision to better play his role as predator, in the night and into the depths. His eyes, 23 cm in diameter, are the largest in the history of animals.

One of these terrible beasts, 5.40 m long, offers its skeleton to buyers at Christie's in Paris on April 7. The first quality of a fossil skeleton on the art market is the percentage it has with respect to a complete specimen. The latter, 90% for the skull and 75% for the rest of the body, deserves its estimate of 180 K €.

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All Biologists would love to have this piece, Pierre. Do we know who the bidder was? I am pretty sure, he would be from some science museum or a lab.




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