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1 September 2002 CALSOYASUCHUS VALLICEPS, A NEW CROCODYLIFORM FROM THE EARLY JURASSIC KAYENTA FORMATION OF ARIZONA
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Abstract
We describe a new fossil crocodyliform archosaur from the Early Jurassic Kayenta Formation of the Navajo Nation that is surprisingly derived for so ancient a specimen. High-resolution X-ray CT analysis reveals that its long snout houses an extensive system of pneumatic paranasal cavities. These are among the most distinctive features of modern crocodylians, yet the evolutionary history of this unique system has been obscured by the inaccessibility of internal structures in most fossil crania. Preliminary phylogenetic analysis indicates that the new species is the oldest known member of a monophyletic Goniopholididae, and within this lineage to be the sister taxon of Eutretauranosuchus, from the Late Jurassic Morrison formation of Colorado. Goniopholididae became extinct at the end of the Cretaceous, but it is more closely related to living crocodylians than are several lineages known only from Cretaceous and younger fossils. The new taxon nearly doubles the known length of goniopholid history and implies a deep, as yet undiscovered, Mesozoic history for several crocodyliform lineages that were once thought to have relatively complete fossil records.
RONALD S. TYKOSKI, TIMOTHY B. ROWE, RICHARD A. KETCHAM and MATTHEW W. COLBERT "CALSOYASUCHUS VALLICEPS, A NEW CROCODYLIFORM FROM THE EARLY JURASSIC KAYENTA FORMATION OF ARIZONA," Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 22(3), (1 September 2002). https://doi.org/10.1671/0272-4634(2002)022[0593:CVANCF]2.0.CO;2
Received: 29 September 1999; Accepted: 16 October 2001; Published: 1 September 2002
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