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1. chinaXiv:201804.01249 [pdf]

Negligible effect of tooth reduction on body mass in Mesozoic birds

ZHOU Ya-Chun; ZHANG Fu-Cheng; Corwin SULLIVAN
Subjects: Geosciences >> Geology

Tooth reduction and loss was an important evolutionary process in Mesozoic birds. Analysis of evolutionary trends in the total mass of the dentition, a function of tooth size and tooth number, has the potential to shed light on the evolutionary pattern of tooth reduction and loss, and on the causes of this pattern. Because modern birds lack teeth, however, they cannot provide the basis for a model that would allow estimation of tooth masses in their Mesozoic counterparts. We selected the teeth of crocodilians as analogues of those in Mesozoic birds because the former are the closest living relatives of the latter, and the two groups are similar in tooth morphology, tooth implantation, and tooth replacement pattern. To estimate tooth masses in Mesozoic birds, we formulated four regression equations relating tooth mass to various linear dimensions, which were measured in 31 intact isolated teeth from eight individual crocodiles (Crocodylus siamensis). The results for Mesozoic birds show that dental mass as a proportion of body mass was negligible, at least from the perspective of flight performance, suggesting that selection pressure favoring body mass reduction was probably not the primary driver of tooth reduction or loss. Variations in dental mass among Mesozoic birds may reflect the different foods they ate, and the different types of feeding behavior they displayed.

submitted time 2018-04-04 From cooperative journals:《古脊椎动物学报》 Hits3126Downloads542 Comment 0

2. chinaXiv:201711.01913 [pdf]

New discoveries from the Sinokannemeyeria-Shansisuchus Assemblage Zone: 3. Archosauriformes from Linxian, Shanxi, China

LIU Jun; Corwin SULLIVAN
Subjects: Biology >> Zoology

The tetrapod assemblage from the Middle Triassic upper part of the Ermaying Formation of northern China has been known for two decades as the Sinokannemeyeria-Shansisuchus Assemblage because of the characteristic presence of the dicynodont therapsid Sinokannemeyeria and the erythrosuchid archosauriform Shansisuchus. Recently a Sinokannemeyeria species has been described from Member I of the Tongchuan Formation, which overlies the Ermaying, near Baidaoyu, Linxian, Shanxi Province. Here we document archosauriform specimens from the Baidaoyu site, including a partial Shansisuchus skeleton and some additional bones from probable suchian archosaurs, which constitute the first archosauriform material known from Member I of the Tongchuan. The most intriguing archosauriform specimens are a large ilium probably attributable to an unusual poposauroid, and a small, strangely shaped element that appears to represent a highly autapomorphic suchian calcaneum. Given the presence of both Sinokannemeyeria and Shansisuchus at Baidaoyu, the stratigraphic range of the Sinokannemeyeria-Shansisuchus Assemblage can be considered to extend upward into the Tongchuan Formation, although with possible changes in faunal composition. The occurrence of a poposauroid ilium at the Baidaoyu locality adds to the evidence that poposauroids diversified extensively during the Middle Triassic.

submitted time 2017-11-07 From cooperative journals:《古脊椎动物学报》 Hits377Downloads198 Comment 0

3. chinaXiv:201708.00182 [pdf]

New discoveries from the Sinokannemeyeria-Shansisuchus Assemblage Zone: 3. Archosauriformes from Linxian, Shanxi, China

LIU Jun; Corwin SULLIVAN
Subjects: Geosciences >> Geology

The tetrapod assemblage from the Middle Triassic upper part of the Ermaying Formation of northern China has been known for two decades as the Sinokannemeyeria-Shansisuchus Assemblage because of the characteristic presence of the dicynodont therapsid Sinokannemeyeria and the erythrosuchid archosauriform Shansisuchus. Recently a Sinokannemeyeria species has been described from Member I of the Tongchuan Formation, which overlies the Ermaying, near Baidaoyu, Linxian, Shanxi Province. Here we document archosauriform specimens from the Baidaoyu site, including a partial Shansisuchus skeleton and some additional bones from probable suchian archosaurs, which constitute the first archosauriform material known from Member I of the Tongchuan. The most intriguing archosauriform specimens are a large ilium probably attributable to an unusual poposauroid, and a small, strangely shaped element that appears to represent a highly autapomorphic suchian calcaneum. Given the presence of both Sinokannemeyeria and Shansisuchus at Baidaoyu, the stratigraphic range of the Sinokannemeyeria-Shansisuchus Assemblage can be considered to extend upward into the Tongchuan Formation, although with possible changes in faunal composition. The occurrence of a poposauroid ilium at the Baidaoyu locality adds to the evidence that poposauroids diversified extensively during the Middle Triassic. 近几十年,华北的二马营组上部地层以产出中国肯氏兽–山西鳄四足动物化石组合而闻名。最近在山西临县白道峪于上覆的铜川组一段发现了中国肯氏兽。本文描述了同一地点同一层位产出的主龙型类化石,包括一具山西鳄的部分骨架以及一些可以归入suchian的主龙类。它们是铜川组一段首次记述的主龙型类。最有鉴定特征的suchian材料包括一个大的髂骨以及一个小的、形状很奇特的、可能是跟骨的骨骼。髂骨可能可以归入一个奇异的波波龙类(poposauroid)。因为中国肯氏兽与山西鳄同时出现在白道峪,表明中国肯氏兽–山西鳄组合可以向上延伸到铜川组一段。髂骨与跟骨大小悬殊,可能代表两个从未在中国肯氏兽–山西鳄组合报道过的物种。白道峪发现了特化的波波龙类,支持了波波龙类在中三叠世大量分化的观点。

submitted time 2017-08-10 From cooperative journals:《古脊椎动物学报》 Hits440Downloads210 Comment 0

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