Langobardisaurus (?) rossii probably has the biggest hole in the head of any reptile (Fig. 1).
The hole, in this case, represents missing matrix and bone. Luckily that’s just where this specimen had a large lateral and upper temporal fenestra (Fig. 2). So, despite the matrix hole, several of the key skull bones were preserved on the counter plate. The plate is now filled with putty or filler, but pre-putty photographs also hold some clues.
L. rossii nests not too far from Sophineta, which also has a new look, (Fig. 3, Evans and Borsuk-Bialynicka 2009) without such an oddly large naris and rostral profile. In this case trusting the original reconstruction was not the best idea. Sophineta is a fissure fill specimen with perfect bones completely disarticuated. Individual bones were traced to create the new look. Sophineta appears to have been the more primitive of the two.
Bizzarini F and Muscio G 1995. Un nuovo rettile (Reptilia, Prolacertiformes) del Norico di Preone (Udine, Italia Nordorientale). Nota Prelimininare. Gortania – Atti Mus. Friulli. Sti. Nat., 16 (1994): 67-76, Udine.
Bizzarini F, Muscio G and Rossi IA 1995. Un nuovo rettile fossile Langobardisaurus? rossiin. sp. Prolacertiformes (Reptilia) della val Preone (UD), Prealpi Carniche Italine. 1-35 Grafiche Tipo, Catelgomberto.
Evans SE and Borsuk-Bialynicka M 2009. A small lepidosauromorph reptile from the Early Triassic of Poland. Palaeontologia Polonica 65:179-202. online pdf
Renesto S and Dalla Vecchia F 2007. A revision of Langobardisaurus rossii Bizzarini and Muscio, 1995, from the Late Triassic of Friuli (Italy)