Article: Revision and re-evaluation of the Early Jurassic dinosaurian ichnogenus Otozoum
Otozoum moodii Hitchcock, 1847 is one of the classic Connecticut Valley ichnotaxa established by Edward Hitchcock between 1836 and 1865. The taxon is redescribed, and AC 4/1a re-established as the holotype specimen. Otozoum minus and O. caudatum are synonymised with O. moodii. The syntypes of Kalosauropus pollex (nomen nudum) are described as O. pollex sp. nov. Cladistic, quantitative, and comparative methods of trackmaker identification suggest that Otozoum was made by a prosauropod dinosaur. In quantitative analyses, only those phalanges likely to contribute to footprint morphology were considered; claws were also excluded due to their highly variable styles of impression. Several diagnostic characters distinguish Otozoum from Brachychirotherium, Chirotherium, Batrachopus, Tetrasauropus, and Pseudotetrasauropus; these ichnotaxa are probably attributable to crurotarsan archosaurs. Otozoum is found primarily in Hettangian strata of the Hartford, Deerfield, and Fundy rift basins of eastern North America; it is also present in the Early Jurassic Navajo Sandstone (Colorado Plateau, USA) and Clarens Formation (Lesotho). The taxon is unknown in older strata; Triassic material previously referred to Otozoum (including O. grandcombensis) instead belongs in Pseudotetrasauropus. Correlation of sediments and comparison of faunal assemblages, particularly within the Newark Supergroup, suggest that the Otozoum trackmakers were restricted to arid environments.