A New Non-mammaliaform Eucynodont from the Ischigualasto Formation of Argentina

Martínez, R. N., Fernandez, E., and O. A. Alcober. 2013. A new non-mammaliaform eucynodont from the Carnian-Norian Ischigualasto Formation, Northwestern Argentina. Revista Brasileira de Paleontologia 16: 61-76. doi:10.4072/rbp.2013.1.05
Abstract - The record of non-mammaliaformes eucynodonts from the Carnian-Norian Ischigualasto Formation is diverse and abundant, including a medium to large size herbivore and small carnivores. Here is described a new small eucynodont from the Ischigualasto Formation, on the basis of a partial skull. The new taxon is characterized by palatal process of the premaxilla extending posterior to the level of the first postcanine; deep and large maxillary laterodorsal fossa that opens at the level of the root of the upper canine; and postorbital bar diverging posterolaterally at very low angle (35.6°) from the anteroposterior axis of the skull. Results from a phylogenetic analysis supports the new genus placement as a probainognathian eucynodont, more derived than Probainognathus Romer, and more closely related to Ecteninion Martinez, May & Forster and Trucidocynodon Oliveira, Soares & Schultz than to any other eucynodont. Ecteniniidae is proposed as a new clade including the new genus, Ecteninion and Trucidocynodon, and in the phylogenetic hypothesis represents the sister-group of Prozostrodontia (Prozostrodon Bonaparte & Barberena, Tritylodontidae and Mammaliaformes). Additionally, the new taxon from the Ischigualasto Formation shows that the Scaphonyx-Exaeretodon-Herrerasaurus biozone has similar cynodont diversity than the supposedly contemporaneous Hyperodapedon Assemblage Zone of Santa Maria 2 Sequence, in Southern Brazil.


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