Myrmecodaptria: a squamate sister to Cryptolacerta.

Among the many lizards
described by Gao and Norell 2000, Myrmecodaptria microphagosa was considered incerta sedis, a possible basal gekkotan (gecko).

A later study
(Conrad and Norell 2006) nested Myrmecodaptria as a basal autarchoglossan (traditionally: snakes/skinks/anguimorphs). Conrad 2008 nested Myrmecodaptria similarly.

The Gauthier et al. 2012 study
nested Myrmecodaptria with Carusia without recognizing that Carusia nests outside of the Squamata. Though not related, the two taxa are quite similar, though Carusia has a proportionately much shorter skull that is overall much larger.

The large reptile tree nested Myrmecodaptria with Cryptolacerta (Fig. 2), an odd, tiny, burrowing lizard also described the same year (Müller et al. 2012). These taxa nested with Kuroyuriella and Ophisaurus, between helodermatids and skinks within the Squamata.

Figure 1. Myrmecodaptria in situ and with the skull roof slightly raised. This specimen nests with Cryptolacerta.

Figure 1. Myrmecodaptria in situ and with the skull roof slightly raised. This specimen nests with Cryptolacerta.

Cryptolacerta provides clues
to the post-crania of Myrmecodaptria, which is only known from a single skull, IGM 3/95.

Figure 2. Cryptolacerta is a sister to Myrmecopatria, but slightly smaller, here shown to scale.

Figure 2. Cryptolacerta is a sister to Myrmecopatria, but slightly smaller, here shown to scale.

Here’s a subset of the large reptile tree
(Fig. 3) that now includes Myrmecodaptria. 

Figure 3. A subset of the large reptile tree focusing on Myrmecodaptria and kin.

Figure 3. A subset of the large reptile tree focusing on Myrmecodaptria and kin. Click to see the entire tree. More derived taxa here include skinks and amphisbaenians.

 

 

 

References
Gao K and  Norell, MA 2000. Taxonomic Composition and Systematics of Late Cretaceous Lizard Assemblages from Ukhaa Tolgod and Adjacent Localities, Mongolian Gobi Desert. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 249: 1-118.
Conrad JL and Norell MA 2006. High-resolution X-ray computed tomography of an Early Cretaceous gekkonomorph (Squamata) from Öösh (Övörkhangai; Mongolia). Historical Biology 18 (4): 405.
Conrad JL 2008. Phylogeny and Systematics of Squamata (Reptilia) Based on Morphology”. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 310: 1–182.
Gauthier JA, Kearney M, Maisano JA, Rieppel O and Behlke ADB. 2012. Assembling the Squamate Tree of Life: Perspectives from the Phenotype and the Fossil Record. Bulletin of the Peabody Museum of Natural History 53: 1-308.

wiki/Myrmecodaptria

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