Pronounced (ZIE-FAK-TIN-US AW-DAX)
Discovered By: Mike Everhart, 1996
Discovery Location: Lane County, Kansas
Location of Original Specimen: North American Museum of Ancient Life, Lehi, Utah
Diet: Meat Eater (Carnivore)
Period: Late Cretaceous
Age: 83 million years
Formation: Niobrara Chalk
Length: 17 ft
This 17 foot long Xiphactinus is one of the largest specimens ever found, and was nearly 100% complete. One of the most interesting things discovered during the preparation of this animal is that it was scavenged and chewed on by a new genus of shark related to Paracorax, whose teeth were found amongst the tooth marked bones.
Most fossil fish are prepared as a wall mount with the bones still in the rock matrix. TPI was the first and only lab to ever attempt to make a three-dimensional skeletal mount from its very fragile bones.