What is Geosaurus? Redescription of G. giganteus (Thalattosuchia: Metriorhynchidae) from the Upper Jurassic of Bayern, Germany

MT Young, Marco B D Andrade

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

93 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The holotype and referred specimens of Geosaurus giganteus, a metriorhynchid crocodile from the Tithonian (Upper Jurassic) of Germany, is redescribed, along with a historical overview of the genus and species. This taxon is unique among metriorhynchids as its serrated, strongly lateromedially compressed dentition is arranged as opposing blades, suggesting it was adapted to efficiently slice through fleshy prey. A new phylogenetic analysis of Crocodylomorpha is presented, which finds G. giganteus to be nested within what is currently considered Dakosaurus, whereas the other species currently assigned to Geosaurus form a clade with Enaliosuchus and the holotype of Cricosaurus. The phyletic relationship of G. giganteus with other metriorhynchids indicates that the current definition of the genus Geosaurus is polyphyletic, and that the inclusion of subsequent longirostrine species to this genus is in error. The re-analysis presented herein demonstrates Geosaurus to be composed of three species sensu stricto. The appropriate taxonomic amendments to the Metriorhynchidae are also provided.
Translated title of the contributionWhat is Geosaurus? Redescription of G. giganteus (Thalattosuchia: Metriorhynchidae) from the Upper Jurassic of Bayern, Germany
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)551 - 585
Number of pages34
JournalZoological Journal of the Linnean Society
Volume157
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2009

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