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The youngest record of metriorhynchid crocodylomorphs, with implications for the extinction of Thalattosuchia

The youngest record of metriorhynchid crocodylomorphs, with implications for the extinction of Thalattosuchia
The youngest record of metriorhynchid crocodylomorphs, with implications for the extinction of Thalattosuchia
Here we describe an isolated tooth of a metriorhynchid crocodylomorph from the Hybla Formation (Aptian, Lower Cretaceous) of Rocca Chi Parra quarry (Montagna Grande, Calatafimi, Trapani Province), Sicily, Italy. The specimen shares with the Upper Jurassic taxon Plesiosuchus manselii a mediolaterally compressed conical tooth crown, noticeable lingual curvature, mesial and distal carinae with microscopic, rectangular contiguous denticles, strong distal curvature of the mesial margin, and the presence of weak 'carinal flanges' on the labial and lingual surfaces (which are preeminent at the mid-crown). This suite of morphologies is also present in an unnamed Valanginian (Lower Cretaceous) plesiosuchinan from France. However, the Sicilian tooth differs from these taxa in having more pronounced carinae, and faint apicobasally aligned enamel ridges. It also differs from P. manselii in having more extensive 'carinal flanges' on the labial surface. The specimen extends the known geological range of Metriorhynchidae and Thalattosuchia by approximately 7–8 million years. This overturns previous hypotheses of Metriorhynchidae becoming extinct early in the Early Cretaceous.
Aptian, Cretaceous, Plesiosuchina, Sicily, Hybla formation
0195-6671
608-616
Chiarenza, Alfio A.
77d468f4-5229-4222-8272-297277a3b6ea
Foffa, Davide
a0a5e738-a340-4b36-b4c7-39e44994f22e
Young, Mark T.
d9880973-1dd1-4b1c-81a8-7494170dbac2
Insacco, Gianni
b588db5e-b687-436e-9aec-b306566aea68
Cau, Andrea
664e02a9-f4ff-460c-b5ff-2c4c9cc41247
Carnevale, Giorgio
0e12ee0d-4aea-4fcf-9a22-69a75aa67ebe
Catanzariti, Rita
8000c645-5e5f-45d5-9544-300763f78552
Chiarenza, Alfio A.
77d468f4-5229-4222-8272-297277a3b6ea
Foffa, Davide
a0a5e738-a340-4b36-b4c7-39e44994f22e
Young, Mark T.
d9880973-1dd1-4b1c-81a8-7494170dbac2
Insacco, Gianni
b588db5e-b687-436e-9aec-b306566aea68
Cau, Andrea
664e02a9-f4ff-460c-b5ff-2c4c9cc41247
Carnevale, Giorgio
0e12ee0d-4aea-4fcf-9a22-69a75aa67ebe
Catanzariti, Rita
8000c645-5e5f-45d5-9544-300763f78552

Chiarenza, Alfio A., Foffa, Davide, Young, Mark T., Insacco, Gianni, Cau, Andrea, Carnevale, Giorgio and Catanzariti, Rita (2015) The youngest record of metriorhynchid crocodylomorphs, with implications for the extinction of Thalattosuchia. Cretaceous Research, 56, 608-616. (doi:10.1016/j.cretres.2015.07.001).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Here we describe an isolated tooth of a metriorhynchid crocodylomorph from the Hybla Formation (Aptian, Lower Cretaceous) of Rocca Chi Parra quarry (Montagna Grande, Calatafimi, Trapani Province), Sicily, Italy. The specimen shares with the Upper Jurassic taxon Plesiosuchus manselii a mediolaterally compressed conical tooth crown, noticeable lingual curvature, mesial and distal carinae with microscopic, rectangular contiguous denticles, strong distal curvature of the mesial margin, and the presence of weak 'carinal flanges' on the labial and lingual surfaces (which are preeminent at the mid-crown). This suite of morphologies is also present in an unnamed Valanginian (Lower Cretaceous) plesiosuchinan from France. However, the Sicilian tooth differs from these taxa in having more pronounced carinae, and faint apicobasally aligned enamel ridges. It also differs from P. manselii in having more extensive 'carinal flanges' on the labial surface. The specimen extends the known geological range of Metriorhynchidae and Thalattosuchia by approximately 7–8 million years. This overturns previous hypotheses of Metriorhynchidae becoming extinct early in the Early Cretaceous.

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More information

Published date: September 2015
Keywords: Aptian, Cretaceous, Plesiosuchina, Sicily, Hybla formation
Organisations: Ocean and Earth Science

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 383868
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/383868
ISSN: 0195-6671
PURE UUID: c27a098e-b30a-44e4-b0ec-ce7031cdf51b

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 10 Nov 2015 14:28
Last modified: 08 Jan 2022 09:28

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Contributors

Author: Alfio A. Chiarenza
Author: Davide Foffa
Author: Mark T. Young
Author: Gianni Insacco
Author: Andrea Cau
Author: Giorgio Carnevale
Author: Rita Catanzariti

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