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First record of Mesozoic terrestrial vertebrates from Lithuania; phytosaurs (Diapsida, Archosauriformes) of probable Late Triassic age, with a review of phytosaur biogeography

Stephen L. Brusatte, Richard J. Butler, Grzegorz Niedzwiedzki, Tomasz Sulej, Robert Bronowicz and Jonas Satkunas
First record of Mesozoic terrestrial vertebrates from Lithuania; phytosaurs (Diapsida, Archosauriformes) of probable Late Triassic age, with a review of phytosaur biogeography
Geological Magazine (January 2013) 150 (1): 110-122

Abstract

Fossils of Mesozoic terrestrial vertebrates from Lithuania and the wider East Baltic region of Europe have previously been unknown. We here report the first Mesozoic terrestrial vertebrate fossils from Lithuania: two premaxillary specimens and three teeth that belong to Phytosauria, a common clade of semiaquatic Triassic archosauriforms. These specimens represent an uncrested phytosaur, similar to several species within the genera Paleorhinus, Parasuchus, Rutiodon and NICROSAURUS: Because phytosaurs are currently only known from the Upper Triassic, their discovery in northwestern Lithuania (the Saltiskiai clay-pit) suggests that at least part of the Triassic succession in this region is Late Triassic in age, and is not solely Early Triassic as has been previously considered. The new specimens are among the most northerly occurrences of phytosaurs in the Late Triassic, as Lithuania was approximately 7-10 degrees further north than classic phytosaur-bearing localities in nearby Germany and Poland, and as much as 40 degrees further north than the best-sampled phytosaur localities in North America. The far northerly occurrence of the Lithuanian fossils prompts a review of phytosaur biogeography and distribution, which suggests that these predators were widely distributed in the Triassic monsoonal belt but rarer in more arid regions.


ISSN: 0016-7568
EISSN: 1469-5081
Coden: GEMGA4
Serial Title: Geological Magazine
Serial Volume: 150
Serial Issue: 1
Title: First record of Mesozoic terrestrial vertebrates from Lithuania; phytosaurs (Diapsida, Archosauriformes) of probable Late Triassic age, with a review of phytosaur biogeography
Affiliation: American Museum of Natural History, Division of Paleontology, New York, NY, United States
Pages: 110-122
Published: 201301
Text Language: English
Publisher: Cambridge University Press, London, United Kingdom
References: 45
Accession Number: 2013-021017
Categories: Vertebrate paleontologyStratigraphy
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Illustration Description: illus. incl. sketch map
N53°00'00" - N56°00'00", E21°00'00" - E27°00'00"
Secondary Affiliation: Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet Muenchen, DEU, GermanyUppsala University, SWE, SwedenPolish Academy of Sciences, Institute of Paleobiology, POL, PolandUniversity of Warsaw, POL, PolandGeological Survey of Lithuania, LTU, Lithuania
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2017, American Geosciences Institute. Abstract, Copyright, Cambridge University Press. Reference includes data from GeoScienceWorld, Alexandria, VA, United States
Update Code: 201314
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