Thryptodus zitteli Loomis, 1900, is an enigmatic Late Cretaceous bony fish with a blunt rostrum formed by the massive left and right premaxillae. This paper documents a rostral specimen of the species from the Tombigbee Sand Member of the Eutaw Formation in west-central Alabama that demonstrates the existence of T. zitteli along the eastern shoreline of the Late Cretaceous Mississippi Embayment. It also constitutes the geologically youngest record for Thryptodus, indicating that the genus lived through at least until the late Santonian and possibly as late as the early Campanian. In addition, this paper discusses the variation in preservation of Thryptodus rostra due to taphonomy as well as the pattern of symphysial fusion between the two premaxillae and that of rostral development and abrasion through ontogeny.
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1 October 2017
The Late Cretaceous ‘Blunt-Snouted’ Bony Fish, Thryptodus zitteli (Actinopterygii: Tselfatiiformes), from the Tombigbee Sand of Alabama, U.S.A., and Comments on Preservational and Ontogenetic Variations of Thryptodus Rostra