Prehistoric Models: Archosauromorphs

Archosauromorpha meaning “ruling reptile forms” in greek, is a clade of diapsid reptiles containing all reptiles more closely related to archosaurs. Archosaurs include crocodilians, dinosaurs, and birds (avian dinosaurs), rather than lepidosaurus including snakes, lizards, and tuataras.

Archosauromorphs first appear during the middle Permian, though they became much more common and diverse during the Triassic Period. Archosaurmorpha is one of the most diverse groups of reptiles, but its members can be united by several shared skeletal characteristics.

Primary source of the data below courtesy: http://www.prehistoric-wildlife.com/

Kingdom: Animalia – Phylum: Chordata – Superclass: Tetrapoda – Class: Reptilia – Clade: Diapsids – Clade: Archosauromorpha – Order: Protorosauria – Clade: Prolacertiformer – Family: Tanystrophidae

(tanystropheids)

Triassic

 

Genus: Tanystropheus “long strap
Genus pronounced: Tan-ee-stro-fee-us
Species: T.‭ ‬conspicuous,‭ ‬T.‭ ‬longbardicus,‭ ‬T.‭ ‬meridensis
Named by: Christian Erich Hermann von Meyer‭ ‬-‭ ‬1852
Classification: Family: Tanystrophidae
Time: Triassic (Anisian to Carnian)
Locality: Europe, Middle East and China
Size: 6 meters long
Diet: Carnivore

Kingdom: Animalia – Phylum: Chordata – Superclass: Tetrapoda – Class: Reptilia – Clade: Diapsids – Clade: Archosauromorpha – Clade: Crocopoda – Clade: Allokotosauria – Family: Azendohsauridae

(azendohsaurs)

Middle Triassic (Ladinian) to Late Triassic (Carnian)

 

Genus: Shringasaurus “horned lizard
Genus pronounced: Shrin-gah-sore-us
Species: S. indicus (type)
Named by: S.‭ ‬Sengupta,‭ ‬M.‭ ‬D.‭ ‬Ezcurra‭ & ‬S.‭ ‬Bandyopadhyay‭ ‬-‭ ‬2017
Classification: Family: Azendohsauridae
Time: Middle Triassic (Anisian)
Locality: India, Madhya Pradesh – Denwa Formation
Size: 4 meters long
Diet: Herbivore

Kingdom: Animalia – Phylum: Chordata – Superclass: Tetrapoda – Class: Reptilia – Clade: Diapsids – Clade: Archosauromorpha – Clade: Crocopoda – Clade: Archosauriformes – Order: Rhynchosauria – Family: Hyperodapedontidae – Subfamily: Hyperodapedon

(rhynchosauria)

Early to Late Triassic

 

Genus: Hyperodapedon  best pestle tooth
Genus pronounced: High-per-o-dap-e-don
Species: H.‭ ‬gordoni‭ (‬type‭)‬,‭ ‬H.‭ ‬huenei,‭ ‬H.‭ ‬huxleyi,‭ ‬H.‭ ‬mariensis,‭ ‬H.‭ ‬sanjuanensis, H. tikiensis
Named by: Thomas Henry Huxley‭ ‬-‭ ‬1859
Classification: Order: Rhynchosauria, Family: Hyperodapedontinae, Subfamily: Hyperodapedontinae
Time: Late Triassic (Carnian)
Locality: Argentina,‭ ‬Brazil,‭ ‬India,‭ ‬Scotland
Size: 1.3 meters long
Diet: Herbivore
 

Kingdom: Animalia – Phylum: Chordata – Superclass: Tetrapoda – Class: Reptilia – Clade: Diapsids – Clade: Archosauromorpha – Clade: Crocopoda – Clade: Archosauriformes – Family: Proterosuchidae

(archosaurformes)

Late Permian to Early Triassic

 

Genus: Proterosuchus‭ early crocodile
Genus pronounced: Pro-teh-ro-su-kuss
Species: P.‭ ‬fergusi‭ (‬type‭)‬,‭ ‬P. alexanderi, P. goweri
Named by: Robert Broom‭ ‬-‭ ‬1903
Classification: Family: Proterosuchidae
Time: Early Triassic (Induan)
Locality: China and South Africa
Size: 3.5 meters long
Diet: Carnivore
 

Kingdom: Animalia – Phylum: Chordata – Superclass: Tetrapoda – Class: Reptilia – Clade: Diapsids – Clade: Archosauromorpha – Clade: Crocopoda – Clade: Archosauriformes – Clade: Eucrocopoda – Family: Euparkeriidae

(early archosaur)

Early Triassic to Middle Triassic

 

Genus: Euparkeria “Parker’s good animals
Genus pronounced: You-par-kare-ree-ah
Species: E.‭ ‬capensis (type)
Named by: Robert Broom‭ ‬-‭ ‬1913
Classification: Family: Euparkeriidae
Time: Early Triassic (Olenekian)
Locality: South Africa
Size: 60 centimeters long
Diet: Carnivore
 

Kingdom: Animalia – Phylum: Chordata – Superclass: Tetrapoda – Class: Reptilia – Clade: Diapsids – Clade: Archosauromorpha – Clade: Crocopoda – Clade: Archosauriformes – Clade: Eucrocopoda – Clade: Crurotarsi – Clade: Archosauria – Clade: Pseudosuchia – Clade: Suchia – Clade: Paracrocodylomorpha – Clade: Loricata – Informal group: Rauisuchia

(“Rauisuchids”)

Early Triassic to Late Triassic

 

Diagnostic features:

The dominant large, terrestrial predators during the Triassic.
Large heads with crocodileilike armor scutes on back.
Legs held beneath body; hind legs longer than front (some bipedal?).
Recent studies suggest that this group is paraphyletic.
Genus: Postosuchus “Crocodile from Post
Genus pronounced: P‬oest-oh-sook-us
Species: P.‭ ‬kirkpatricki (type),‭ ‬P.‭ ‬alisonae
Named by: Sankar Chatterjee‭ ‬-‭ ‬1985
Classification: Family: Rausisuchidae
Time: Late Triassic (Carnian to Norian)
Locality: Arizona,‭ ‬New Mexico,‭ ‬North Carolina and Texas; USA
Size: 4 to 5 meters long
Diet: Carnivore
 
Genus: Prestosuchus “fast crocodile
Genus pronounced: P‬ress-oh-soo-kus
Species: P.‭ ‬chiniquensis‭ (type)
Named by: Friedrich von Huene‭ ‬-‭ ‬1942
Classification: Family: Prestosuchidae
Time: Middle Triassic (Ladinian)
Locality: Brazil – Santa Maria Formation
Size: 5 meters long
Diet: Carnivore
 
Genus: Ornithosuchus “bird crocodile
Genus pronounced: Or-nif-oh-soo-kus
Species: O.‭ woodwardi‭ (type)
Named by:Thomas Henry Huxley‭ ‬-‭ ‬1877
Classification: Family: Ornithosuchidae
Time: Late Triassic (Carnian)
Locality: Scotland
Size: 2.2 meters long
Diet: Carnivore
 
Genus: Poposaurus “Pop lizard – after the Popo Agie Formation
Genus pronounced: Pop-o-sore-us
Species: P.‭ ‬gracilis‭ (‬type‭)‬,‭‬P.‭ ‬langstoni
Named by: M.‭ ‬G.‭ ‬Mehl‭ ‬-‭ ‬1915
Classification: Family: Poposauridae
Time: Late Triassic (Carnian to Norian)
Locality: USA,‭ ‬including Arizona‭ ‬-‭ ‬Chinle Formation‭ (‬Blue Mesa Member,‭ ‬Mesa Redondo Member,‭ ‬Owl Rock Member,‭ ‬Petrified Forest Member,‭ ‬Sonsela Member‭)‬,‭ ‬Texas‭ ‬-‭ ‬Colorado City Formation,‭ ‬Cooper Canyon Formation,‭ ‬Tecovas Formation,‭ ‬Utah‭ ‬-‭ ‬Chinle Formation‭ (‬Monitor Butte Member‭) ‬and Wyoming‭ ‬-‭ ‬Popo Agie Formation.
Size: 4 meters long
Diet: Carnivore

Kingdom: Animalia – Phylum: Chordata – Superclass: Tetrapoda – Class: Reptilia – Clade: Diapsids – Clade: Archosauromorpha – Clade: Crocopoda – Clade: Archosauriformes – Clade: Eucrocopoda – Clade: Crurotarsi – Clade: Archosauria – Clade: Pseudosuchia – Clade: Suchia – Clade: Paracrocodylomorpha – Clade: Loricata – Order: Phytosauria – Family: Phytosauridae

(Phytosaurs)

Middle Triassic to Late Triassic

 

Diagnostic features:

Large, sprawling, semi-aquatic carnivores.
Long, slender snout, with nostrils close to eyes.
Convergenly resembles modern crocodiles (particualry gavials).
Genus: Rutiodon “wrinkled tooth
Genus pronounced: Roo-tee-oh-don
Species: R.‭ ‬manhattanensis‭ (‬type‭)‬.‭‬R.‭ ‬carolinensis
Named by: Ebenezer Emmons‭ ‬-‭ ‬1856
Classification: Family: Phytosauridae
Time: Late Triassic
Locality: Germany,‭ ‬Mexico,‭ ‬Switzerland,‭ ‬USA‭ ‬-‭ ‬Arizona,‭ ‬New Jersey,‭ ‬New Mexico,‭ ‬New York,‭ ‬North Carolina,‭ ‬Pennsylvania and Texas.
Size: 3 to 8 meters long
Diet: Carnivore
 

Click here to see my Phytosaur fossils click here.

Kingdom: Animalia – Phylum: Chordata – Superclass: Tetrapoda – Class: Reptilia – Clade: Diapsids – Clade: Archosauromorpha – Clade: Crocopoda – Clade: Archosauriformes – Clade: Eucrocopoda – Clade: Crurotarsi – Clade: Archosauria – Clade: Pseudosuchia – Clade: Suchia – Clade: Paracrocodylomorpha – Clade: Loricata – Order: Aetosauria

(Aetosaurs)

Late Triassic

 

Diagnostic features:

Heavily armored with bony plates (osteoderms) covering back, spikes on side.
Relatively small heads.
Herbivores (convergent evolution with Ankylosaur dinosaurs).
Genus: Desmatosuchus “link crocodile
Genus pronounced: Dez-mat-oh-soo-kus
Species: D.‭ ‬spurensis‭ (‬type‭)‬,‭ ‬D.‭ ‬haplocerus,‭ ‬D.‭ ‬smalli.‭
Named by: Case – 1920
Classification: Family: Stagonolepididae, Subfamily: Desmatosuchinae
Time: Late Triassic (Carnian to Norian)
Locality: Texas
Size: 4.5 to 5 meters long
Diet: Herbivore

Kingdom: Animalia – Phylum: Chordata – Superclass: Tetrapoda – Class: Reptilia – Clade: Diapsids – Clade: Archosauromorpha – Clade: Crocopoda – Clade: Archosauriformes – Clade: Eucrocopoda – Clade: Crurotarsi – Clade: Archosauria – Clade: Pseudosuchia – Clade: Suchia – Clade: Paracrocodylomorpha – Clade: Loricata – Superorder: Crocodylomorpha – Clade: Crocodyliformes – Family: Protosuchidae

(early crocodiles)

Late Triassic (Norian) to Early Cretaceous (Albian)

 

Genus: Protosuchus  first crocodile
Genus pronounced: Pro-toe-soo-kus
Species: P.‭ ‬richardsoni‭(‬type‭)‬,‭ ‬P.‭ ‬haughtoni,‭ ‬P.‭ ‬micmac
Named by: Barnum Brown‭ ‬-‭ ‬1934
Classification: Suborder: Crocodylomorpha, Family: Protosuchidae
Time: Early Jurassic
Locality: Canada‭ ‬-‭ ‬Nova Scotia.‭ ‬USA‭ ‬-‭ ‬Arizona.‭ ‬South Africa
Size: 1 meters long
Diet: Carnivore
 

Kingdom: Animalia – Phylum: Chordata – Superclass: Tetrapoda – Class: Reptilia – Clade: Diapsids – Clade: Archosauromorpha – Clade: Crocopoda – Clade: Archosauriformes – Clade: Eucrocopoda – Clade: Crurotarsi – Clade: Archosauria – Clade: Pseudosuchia – Clade: Suchia – Clade: Paracrocodylomorpha – Clade: Loricata – Superorder: Crocodylomorpha – Clade: Crocodyliformes – Clade: Mesoeucrocodyl – Suborder: Thalattosuchia

(marine crocodiles)

Middle Jurassic to Early Cretaceous

 

Diagnostic features:

A clade of fully aquatic crocodylomorphs (crocodile relatives).
Adapted to marine environment: limbs form paddle-like fins.
Hindfins larger than small front fins; toe structure usually visible.
Tail fluke present.
Lacked dermal armor of other Pseudosuchians.
Genus: Plesiosuchus  “near crocodile”
Genus pronounced: Ples-e-oh-soo-kus
Species: P.‭ ‬manselii‭(‬type‭)
Named by: Richard Owen‭ ‬-‭ ‬1884
Classification: Suborder: Thalattosuchia, Family: Metriorhynchidae, Subfamily: Geosaurinae
Time: Late Jurassic (Kimmeridgian to Tithonian)
Locality: England‭ ‬-‭ ‬Kimmeridge Clay Formation
Size: 5.2 to 6.83 meters long
Diet: Carnivore
 
Genus: Metriorhynchus  moderate snout
Genus pronounced: Met-ree-oh-rink-us
Species: M. brevirostris(‬type‭)
Named by: Christian Erich Hermann von Meyer‭ ‬-‭ ‬1830
Classification: Suborder: Thalattosuchia, Family: Metriorhynchidae
Time: Jurassic (Callovian through to Kimmeridgian)
Locality: Europe
Size: 3 meters long
Diet: Carnivore
 
Genus: Dakosaurus “tearing lizard/biter lizard”
Genus pronounced: Dack-oh-sore-us
Species:D.‭ ‬maximus‭ (‬type‭)‬,‭ ‬D.‭ ‬andiniensis
Named by:Friedrich August von Quenstedt‭ ‬-‭ ‬1856
Classification: Suborder: Thalattosuchia, Family: Metriorhynchidae, Subfamily: Geosaurinae
Time: Jurassic (Oxfordian) to Early Cretaceous (Berriasian)
Locality: Europe,‭ ‬North America,‭ ‬South America,‭ ‬Russia
Size: 4 to 5 meters long
Diet: Carnivore
 

Kingdom: Animalia – Phylum: Chordata – Superclass: Tetrapoda – Class: Reptilia – Clade: Diapsids – Clade: Archosauromorpha – Clade: Crocopoda – Clade: Archosauriformes – Clade: Eucrocopoda – Clade: Crurotarsi – Clade: Archosauria – Clade: Pseudosuchia – Clade: Suchia – Clade: Paracrocodylomorpha – Clade: Loricata – Superorder: Crocodylomorpha – Clade: Crocodyliformes – Clade: Mesoeucrocodylia – Clade: Metasuchia – Clade: Ziphosuchia – Suborder: Notosuchia

(Gondwanan crocodylomorphs)

Middle Jurassic to Late Cretaceous

 

Diagnostic features:

A group of stem crocs from the southern hemisoohere.
Back covered in armored scutes called osteroderms.
Terrestrial, with legs held beneath body.
Diverse in apprearance and lifestyle: includes herbivores, ominvoures, and carnivores.
Some were burriwers with armadillo-like bands of armor. 
Genus: Kaprosuchus‭ boar crocodile
Genus pronounced: Kap-roe-soo-kuss
Species: K.‭ saharicus‭ (‬type‭)
Named by: Paul Sereno‭ & ‬Hans Larsson‭ ‬-‭ ‬2009
Classification: Suborder: Notosuchia, Family: Mahajangasuchidae
Time: Early Cretaceous (Cenomanian)
Locality:  Africa,‭ ‬Niger,‭ ‬Echkar Formation
Size: 3.3 meters long
Diet: Carnivore
 
Genus: Montealtosuchus “crocodile from Monte Alto municipality
Genus pronounced: Mon-te-al-to-oh-soo-kus
Species: M.‭ arrudacamposi‭ (‬type‭)
Named by: Carvalho – 2007
Classification: Suborder: Notosuchia, Family: Peirosauridae
Time: Late Cretaceous (Campanian to Maastrichtian)
Locality: Brazil – Adamantina Formartion
Size: 2 meters long
Diet: Carnivore
 

Kingdom: Animalia – Phylum: Chordata – Superclass: Tetrapoda – Class: Reptilia – Clade: Diapsids – Clade: Archosauromorpha – Clade: Crocopoda – Clade: Archosauriformes – Order: Choristodera – Suborder: Nechoristodera

(choristodera)

Middle Jurassic to Miocene

 

Genus: Champsosaurus  crocodile lizard
Genus pronounced: Champ-so-sore-us
Species: C.‭ ‬albertensis,‭ ‬C.‭ ‬australis,‭ ‬C.‭ ‬gigas,‭ ‬C.‭ ‬laramiensis,‭ ‬C.‭ ‬lindoei,‭ ‬C.‭ ‬lindoei,‭ ‬C.‭ ‬natator,‭ ‬C.‭ ‬tenuis
Named by: Edward Drinker Cope‭ ‬-‭ ‬1877
Classification: Order: Choristodera, Family: Champsosauridae
Time: Cretaceous (Turonian) to Paleocene (Thanetian)
Locality: Canada and USA
Size: 1.5 to 3.5 meters long
Diet: Carnivore/Piscivore
 

Kingdom: Animalia – Phylum: Chordata – Superclass: Tetrapoda – Class: Reptilia – Clade: Diapsids – Clade: Archosauromorpha – Clade: Crocopoda – Clade: Archosauriformes – Clade: Eucrocopoda – Clade: Crurotarsi – Clade: Archosauria – Clade: Pseudosuchia – Clade: Suchia – Clade: Paracrocodylomorpha – Clade: Loricata – Superorder: Crocodylomorpha – Clade: Crocodyliformes – Clade: Mesoeucrocodylia – Clade: Metasuchia – Clade: Neosuchia – Clade: Eusuchia – Order: Crocodylia

(modern crocodiles)

Late Cretaceous to Holocene

 

Diagnostic features:

Includes modern alligators, crocodiles, and extinct relatives.
Includes the modern Crocodylia.
Generally had elongated snouts.
Back covered in armored scutes.
Mostly semiaquatic, elongated body, flattened tail, and sprawling limbs.
Paraphyletic: the fully aquatic Thalattosuchians are derived from within this group.
Genus: Pristichampsus  saw crocodile
Genus pronounced: Priss-tee-champ-sus
Species: P.‭ ‬rollinatii‭ (‬type‭)‬,‭‬P.‭ ‬geiseltalensis,‭ ‬P.‭ ‬vorax
Named by: Gervais‭ – ‬1853
Classification: Order: Crocodylia, Family: Pristichampidae
Time: Eocene (Lutetian)
Locality:  Eurasia and North America
Size: 3 meters long
Diet: Carnivore
Genus: Sarcosuchus‭  flesh crocodile
Genus pronounced: Sar-ko-su-kus
Species: S.‭ ‬imperator‭ (‬type‭), S. hartti
Named by: France de Broin‭ & ‬Phillipe Taquet‭ ‬1966‭‬
Classification: Order: Crocodylia, Family: Pholidosauridae
Time: Early Cretaceous (Hauterivian to Albian)
Locality:  Eurasia and North America
Size: 9 to 11 meters long
Diet: Carnivore
 
Genus: Deinosuchus‭  terrible crocodile
Genus pronounced: Dy-no-su-kus
Species:D. hatcheri (type), D. rugosus, D. riograndensis, D. schwimmeri
Named by: William Jacob Holland ‬- 1909
Classification: Order: Crocodylia, Family: Alligatoridea
Time: Late Cretaceous (Campanian)
Locality:  Mexico and USA
Size: 10 to 12 meters long
Diet: Carnivore
 
Genus and species: Crocodylus porosus
Common Name: Saltwater crocodile
Named by: Schneider – 1801
Classification: Order: Crocodilia, Family: Crocodylidae
Time: Pliocene to Holocene
Locality:  Southeat Asia, Micronesia, and Sundaic region to northern Australia
Size: Males 6 m (20 ft), Femailes 3 m (10 ft)
Diet: Carnivore
 
Genus and species: Alligator mississippiensis
Common Name: American alligator
Named by: Daudin – 1802
Classification: Order: Crocodilia, Family: Alligatoridae, Subfamily: Alligatorinae
Time: Miocene to Holocene
Locality:  Southeast United States/Gulf Coast
Size: Males 3.4 to 4.8 m (11.2 to 15.7 ft), Femailes 2.6 to 3 m (8.5 to 9.8 ft)
Diet: Carnivore
 
Genus and species: Gavialis gangeticus
Common Name: Gharial
Named by: Schneider – 1801
Classification: Order: Crocodilia, Family: Gavialidae
Time: Pleisocene to Holocene
Locality:  India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Myanmar
Size: Males 3 to 6 m (9 ft 10 in to 19 ft 8 in), Femailes 2.6 to 4.5 m (8 ft 6 in to 14 ft 9in)
Diet: Carnivore
 

Click here to see my Crocodile fossils click here.

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