Data from: The Middle Triassic procolophonid Kapes bentoni: computed tomography of the skull and skeleton

  • Marta Zaher (Contributor)
  • Robert R. Coram (Contributor)
  • Michael J Benton (Contributor)



Procolophonids were diverse small reptiles through the Late Permian and Triassic. Relatively complete specimens of various taxa are known from the Early and Late Triassic, but the ten or so Middle Triassic taxa, from South Africa, Russia, China and the UK, are mostly incomplete, being known only from skulls or partial and poorly preserved isolated elements. Because of their small size, it has often been difficult to establish details of anatomy using physical preparation methods, so application of scanning technology can massively improve knowledge. Here we describe the first substantial portion of a skull and anterior postcranial skeleton of the genus Kapes, known from Russia and the UK. CT scanning and 3D digital restoration of the new specimen from the Anisian Otter Sandstone of Devon, UK, reveal anatomical details previously unknown for this taxon, most notably the enlarged quadratojugal processes. This is also one of the few mature procolophonid specimens with a preserved postcranium, and it gives a valuable insight into ossification patterns. Fused sutures of the skull, fused scapulocoracoid, and heavily worn teeth show evidence of the common reptilian ossification pattern with a possible limitation in tooth replacement. There is sufficient anatomical information to include Kapes bentoni for the first time in a cladistic analysis, which shows that it is sister to the Russian Kapes majmesculae and part of a clade of Anisian taxa phylogenetically more basal than Procolophon. Inferences on the function of the quadratojugal spines and fossorial mode of life are also considered.,Appendix S1A collection of 3D models used in this study. It contains a 3D model of complete specimen BRSUG 29950-13 how it was positioned in the matrix, and individual elements. Individual elements are in some cases presented both in their original and retrodeformed state, where the description was based off retrodeformed versions. For methods used to create models see Zaher et al. (2018).BRSUG 29950-13_3D_meshes.zipAppendix S2Image stack of the CT scan data with a text file that contains scan details and settings.TIFF_stack.zipAppendix S3NEXUS file of the data matrix used in a Phylogenetic analysis.Procolophonidae.nexAppendix S4Character list used in a Phylogenetic analysis.Character_list.pdf,
Date made available2 Jul 2019

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