250 Million Year Old Species Of Reptile Discovered In Brazil
An artist’s rendition of Teyujagua paradoxa. Image credit: Voltaire Neto.
Fossil remains of a previously unknown species of reptile that lived about 250 million years ago (Triassic period) have been found in the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul. The reptile, named Teyujagua paradoxa, lived just after the great Permo-Triassic mass extinction event that occurred 252 million years ago.
This extinction wiped out about 90% of all species then living and was probably triggered by giant and intense volcanic eruptions in what is now Siberia.
The exceptional fossil skull of Teyujagua paradoxa was found in a Triassic rock exposure near the city of São Francisco de Assis. According to Dr. Felipe Pinheiro from the Universidade Federal do Pampa, this fossil is very different from other fossils from the same age.
Photographs and interpretative drawings in right lateral (A,B) and dorsal (C,D) views. Abbreviations: an, angular; dt, dentary; emf, external mandibular fenestra; fr, frontal; ju, jugal; la, lacrimal; mx, maxilla; na, nasal; pa, parietal; pmx, premaxilla; po, postorbital; pofr, postfrontal; prf, prefrontal; q, quadrate; q j, quadratojugal; rap, retroarticular process; sa, surangular; sq, squamosal; st, supratemporal. Artwork by J. Anderson.