Pachypleurosaurus (meaning 'thick rib lizard') is a genus of pachypleurosaurian that lived during the Triassic Period. It was a basal sauropterygian, and had a long neck. The type species is P. edwardsi.

This aquatic animal was a nothosaur, an early relative of the plesiosaurs and placodonts. In contrast to the highly modified paddles of plesiosaurs, pachypleurosaurs had hands and feet that were still very similar to those of land-dwelling tetrapods. It is likely that undulations of its backbone provided the main propulsive force for swimming. Like other nothosaurs, Pachypleurosaurus was a marine animal that probably lived on fish or small invertebrates.




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