hunterweeks.com Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC" /> A new Middle Triassic eosauropterygian (Reptilia, Sauropterygia) from southwestern China: Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology: Vol 28, No 4

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ABSTRACT

A new eosauropterygian genus and species is described from the middle Anisian (Middle Triassic) of Panxian (Guizhou Province, southwestern China). The new taxon is characterized by an unique specialization of the jaws that form an elongate pointed rostrum furnished with numerous small, monocuspid and vertically oriented teeth with a basally expanded crown and pointed tip, which is quite unlike any other sauropterygian known. Other diagnostic characters include: frontals paired; parietal unpaired; pineal foramen located centrally in broad parietal skull table; two carpal ossification; ilium with distinct preacetabular process at the base of the dorsally extending iliac blade; pubis plate-like and of rounded contours; two tarsal ossifications. The curved and distally expanded humerus, the reversed topological relationship of the clavicle and scapula, and the presence of three sacral ribs indicate sauropterygian affinities of the new taxon, whereas the ‘butterfly-shaped’ or ‘cruciform’ facet for the neural arch on the dorsal centrum surface indicate its eosauropterygian status.