SVP 20 – a Euryodus (microsaur) -like captorhinid, Opisthodontosaurus

We looked at this taxon, Opisthodontosaurus, earlier here.
Reisz et al. 2015 describe a captorhinid basal reptile similar to a microsaur.

Figure 1. Opisthodontosaurus (above) with missing bones in color. Black lines represent the referred specimen, OMNH 77470 scaled to fit the holotype, OMNH 77469, here in ghosted lines. Colors represent missing bones.

Figure 1. Opisthodontosaurus (above) with missing bones in color. Black lines represent the referred specimen, OMNH 77470 scaled to fit the holotype, OMNH
77469, here in ghosted lines. Colors represent missing bones.

From the abstract
“The Lower Permian fossiliferous infills of the Dolese Brothers Limestone Quarry, near Richards Spur, Oklahoma, have preserved the most diverse assemblage of terrestrial vertebrates, including small-bodied reptiles, lepospondyl microsaurs, and dissorophoid temnospondyls. One taxon that was previously only known from isolated jaw elements at the locality was the microsaur Euryodus primus. Although it is known from more complete material elsewhere, other remains of E. primus have remained elusive at the Dolese Brothers Quarry.

Figure 1. Euryodus primus, a microsaur nesting between Scincosaurus and Micraroter. Note the odd posterior canine teeth.

Figure 1. Euryodus primus, a microsaur nesting between Scincosaurus and Micraroter. Note the odd posterior canine teeth, much more exaggerated than in Opisthodontosaurus.

The recent discovery of partial articulated skulls and skeletons of a small reptile at Dolese permits the recognition that the dentigerous elements that were previously assigned to Euryodus primus from this locality belong instead to a new captorhinid eureptile. The new captorhinid represents a major departure from other members of this clade in the unique anatomy of its jaws and dentition, which are characterized by their bulbous maxillary and dentary teeth. Three enlarged teeth are present on the maxilla, one in the anterior and two in the posterior region, whereas the premaxillary dentition is homodont and small. In addition, the largest dentary tooth is present along the posterior half of the bone. The dentary is characterized by the presence of a large well-developed coronoid process and deep lateral excavation in the posterior one-quarter of the bone. A phylogenetic analysis of captorhinid eureptiles yields two most parsimonious trees, with one in which the new captorhinid is recovered as the sister taxon to Concordia, this clade in turn being the sister to all other captorhinids, and a second in which the new captorhinid is the sister to all other derived captorhinids, to the exclusion of Concordia and Thuringothyris

The sisters to captorhinids
also include Saurorictus (actually a basal captorhinid), Romeria primusReiszorhinus and Cephalerpeton in the large reptile tree, none of which have enlarged posterior teeth. Cephalerpeton had a complete set of enlarged maxillary teeth with an oddly raised posterior dentary, below the orbit. All of these taxa have a much taller squamosal and a much smaller suptratemporal. The postorbital and postfrontal are triangular. None of these taxa have a dentary with a deep lateral excavation, but otherwise are all quite similar to microsaurs.

Unique among microsaurs
Euryodus
is rather unique among microsaurs with its enlarged posterior teeth. So the headline of Reisz, Leblanc and Scott is a little misleading. The large reptile tree nests Euryodus in a separate clade (Microsauria) from Opisthodontosaurus (with Cephalerpeton).

References
Reisz R, Leblanc A and Scott D 2015. A new early Permian captorhinid reptile (Amniota: Eureptilia) from Richards Spur, Oklahoma, shows remarkable dental and mandibular convergence with microsaurs.

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