Royal Society Publishing

A new Triassic procolophonoid reptile and its implications for procolophonoid survivorship during the Permo-Triassic extinction event

Sean Modesto, Hans-Dieter Sues, Ross Damiani


A reptile specimen from the Lystrosaurus Assemblage Zone of the Beaufort Group, lowermost Triassic of South Africa, represents a new procolophonoid parareptile. Sauropareion anoplus gen. et sp. nov. is identified as the sister taxon of Procolophonidae in a phylogenetic analysis of procolophonoids. Stratigraphic calibration of the most parsimonious tree reveals that four of the six procolophonoid lineages originating in the Permian Period extended into the succeeding Triassic Period. This relatively high taxic survivorship (67%) across the Permo–Triassic boundary strongly suggests that procolophonoids were little if at all affected by the mass extinction event that punctuated the end of the Palaeozoic Era (ca. 251 million years ago).

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