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The turtles either died naturally or were harvested for their decorative shells as part of the global tortoiseshell trade.
The researchers worked with federal agencies, law enforcement and museum archives to obtain the specimens.
There are three main hypotheses concerning their origins, and existing evidence is such that there is a lack of overwhelming support for any one of them.
One hypothesis relies heavily on DNA analysis, whereas the others are based on morphological studies of fossils.
and two later-appearing Triassic genera are likely not true side-necks but turtles that share some pleurodire characteristics.
Unquestionable pleurodires do not appear until the Early Cretaceous (about 145 million to 100.5 million years ago), and the first modern side-neck families do not appear until the Late Cretaceous (100.5 million to 66 million years ago).
Join us this evening for our monthly Mug Club Party! The largest known turtle, , a genus of sea turtles that lived during the Late Cretaceous, reached a length of about 3.5 metres (12 feet).Softshell turtles (family Trionychidae) are the first modern turtles found in the fossil record, appearing in the Cretaceous Period.This evidence also suggests that the carapace of later turtles arose from neural plates that hardened over time to become flat sections of bone (osteoderms) supported by wide dorsal ribs.Teeth were still present in turtles at this time, appearing in both the upper and lower jaws of offer insight into early anatomy, the origin of turtles remains a strongly debated issue.
was toothed, and its midsection contained nine elongated trunk vertebrae, nine pairs of broad T-shaped dorsal ribs, and five pairs of gastralia (ventrally located abdominal ribs).