Archosauriformes (Proterosuchus, dinosaurs, birds, crocodiles and extinct relatives)

Life > Eukaryotes > Opisthokonta > Metazoa (animals) > Bilateria > Deuterostomia > Chordata > Craniata > Vertebrata (vertebrates)  > Gnathostomata (jawed vertebrates) > Teleostomi (teleost fish) > Osteichthyes (bony fish) > Class: Sarcopterygii (lobe-finned fish) > Stegocephalia (terrestrial vertebrates) > Tetrapoda (four-legged vertebrates) > Reptiliomorpha > Amniota > Reptilia >  Romeriida > Diapsida > Archosauromorpha

Classification

Based on Nesbitt (2011). '#' indicates the taxon is known only from fossils, with no living representatives.

# Proterosuchus

The most basal member of the Archosauriformes. The genus includes a single extinct species, Proterosuchus fergusi, which is known from a number of fossils from South Africa in Early Triassic karoo rocks, Induan stage (251 to 249.7 million years old), in the Listrosaurus Assemblage Zone (Beaufort Group).

# Erythrosuchus

Includes a single extinct species, Erythrosuchus africanus, known from a few fossils from South Africa in Middle Triassic karoo rocks, Anisian stage (245 to 237 million years old), in the Cynognathus Assemblage Zone (B) (Beaufort Group).

 

# Vancleavea

Known from fossils collected in the USA.

 

# Proterochampsia

Known from fossils collected in Argentina. Includes the genera Tropidosuchus and Chanaresuchus.

 

# Euparkeria

Includes a single extinct species, Euparkeria africanus, known from a few fossils from South Africa, in Middle Triassic karoo rocks, Anisian stage (245 to 237 million years ago), in the Cynognathus Assemblage Zone (B) (Beaufort Group).  

Crurotarsi

Defined as the least inclusive clade that includes both Crocodylus niloticus (Nile crocodile) and Rutiodon carolinensis (this latter fossil species is a phytosaur) (Nesbitt 2011). In the phylogeny of Brusatte et al. (2010), the Phytosauria is placed within the Archosauria as the sister group to Suchia and so in this latter phylogeny Crurotarsi falls within the Archosauria as the sister taxon to the Avemetatarsalia.

 
 

# Phytosauria

Known from fossils collected in India and the USA. Includes the genera Parasuchus, Pseudopalatus, Rutiodon and Smilosuchus.

 
 

Archosauria (crocodiles, dinosaurs, birds and extinct relatives)

Includes a large complex of extinct fossil groups out of which two groups survived through to the present: the crocodiles, represented in southern Africa by Crocodylus niloticus (Nile crocodile), and the birds, which evolved from dinosaurs and which are represented in southern Africa by 951 living species.

Publications

  • Nesbitt SJ. 2011. The early evolution of archosaurs: relationships and the origin of major clades. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 352: 1-292.

 


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