An enigmatic crocodyliformtooth from the bauxites of western Hungary suggests hidden mesoeucrocodylian diversity in the Early Cretaceous European archipelago

Attila Osi, Márton Rabi, László Makádi

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2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background. The Cretaceous of southern Europe was characterized by an archipelago setting with faunas of mixed composition of endemic, Laurasian and Gondwanan elements. However, little is known about the relative timing of these faunal influences. The Lower Cretaceous of East-Central Europe holds a great promise for understanding the biogeographic history of Cretaceous European biotas because of the former proximity of the area to Gondwana (as part of the Apulian microcontinent). However, East-Central European vertebrates are typically poorly known fromthis time period. Here, we report on a ziphodont crocodyliform tooth discovered in the Lower Cretaceous (Albian) Alsópere Bauxite Formation of Olaszfalu, westernHungary. Methods. The morphology of the tooth is described and compared with that of other similar Cretaceous crocodyliforms. Results. Based on the triangular, slightly distally curved, constricted and labiolingually flattened crown, the small, subequal-sized true serrations on the carinae mesially and distally, the longitudinal fluting labially, and the extended shelves along the carinae lingually the tooth is most similar to some peirosaurid, non-baurusuchian sebecosuchian, and uruguaysuchid notosuchians. In addition, the paralligatorid Wannchampsus also possesses similar anterior teeth, thus the Hungarian tooth is referred here toMesoeucrocodylia indet. Discussion. Supposing a notosuchian affinity, this tooth is the earliest occurrence of the group in Europe and one of the earliest in Laurasia. In case of a paralligatorid relationship theHungarian tooth would represent their first European record, further expanding their cosmopolitan distribution. In any case, the ziphodont tooth fromthe Albian bauxite deposit of western Hungary belongs to a group still unknown from the Early Cretaceous European archipelago and therefore implies a hidden diversity of crocodyliforms in the area.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere1160
JournalPeerJ
Volume2015
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2015

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Keywords

  • Albian
  • Alsópere Bauxite Formation
  • Early Cretaceous
  • Hungary
  • Notosuchia
  • Paralligatoridae

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)

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