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Article: Cranial osteology of Arctognathus curvimola, a short-snouted gorgonopsian from the Late Permian of South Africa

Papers in Palaeontology - Vol. 1 Part 1 - Cover Image
Publication: Palaeontology
Volume: 1
Part: 1
Publication Date: Febuary 2015
Page(s): 41 58
Author(s): Christian F. Kammerer
DOI: 10.1002/spp2.1002
Addition Information

How to Cite

KAMMERER, C.F. 2015. Cranial osteology of Arctognathus curvimola, a short-snouted gorgonopsian from the Late Permian of South Africa. Papers in Palaeontology, 1, 1, 41–58.

Author Information

  • Christian F. Kammerer - Museum für Naturkunde, Leibniz-Institut für Evolutions- und Biodiversitätsforschung an der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Berlin, Germany (email: christian.kammerer@mfn-berlin.de)

Publication History

  • Issue published online: 16 FEB 2015
  • Article first published online: 7 OCT 2014
  • Manuscript Accepted: 13 JUN 2014
  • Manuscript Received: 28 APR 2014

Funded By

Sofja Kovalevskaja Award of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation

Online Version Hosted By

Wiley Online Library
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Abstract

Gorgonopsia is one of the major clades of nonmammalian therapsids and includes the dominant vertebrate predators of the Late Permian. Unfortunately, gorgonopsian taxonomy is extremely problematic, due in large part to the lack of thorough descriptions and clear differential diagnoses for most nominal species. Here, the South African gorgonopsian species Arctognathus curvimola is redescribed based on a well-preserved skull. Autapomorphies identified for A. curvimola include a characteristic curvature to the alveolar margin of the snout, extremely reduced lacrimal, lengthy upper postcanine tooth row and a unique vomerine morphology. The nominal gorgonopsian species Arctognathoides breviceps and Lycaenodontoides bathyrhinus are considered junior synonyms of A. curvimola. Other referred species of Arctognathus (A. whaitsi, A.? cookei and A.? nasuta) share no unique characters with A. curvimola and are removed from the genus; their generic placement is uncertain at present. Previous reports of Arctognathus from Tanzania and the Middle Permian of South Africa are not referable to this taxon. At present, definitive specimens of A. curvimola are restricted to the Upper Permian Cistecephalus and Dicynodon assemblage zones of South Africa.

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