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What is Cosesaurus? (2)

Dr Silvio Renesto very kindly sent me the following information regarding 


Cosesaurus is a tiny reptile from the Triassic of Spain, very probably a
prolacertiform with an elongate fifth toe in a tanystropheus-like fashion.
Due to the kind of sediments and of preservation it is not easy to see
details and this may explain part of the mess. The references I am aware 
are the following ones. Being interested in prolacertiforms, I will be 
grateful to know about new literature, if existing, thanks:

Ellenberger P. & de Villalta J. F. 1974: sur  la presence d'un ancetre
probable des Oiseaux dans le Muschelkalk superieur de Catalogne (Espagne).
Note preliminaire. Acta Geologica Hispanica tome IX n. 5: 162-168.
(first description, as a pre-bird)

Ellenberger, p. 1977: Quelques precisions sur l'anatomie functionale et la
place systematique tres speciale de Cosesaurus aviceps. Cuadernos Geologia
Iberica 4, 169-188.
(Here it is extensively described as a pre-bird)

Sanz J. L. and Lopez Martinez, N. 1984. The prolacertid lepidosaurian
Cosesaurus aviceps Ellenberger & de Villalta, a claimed "protoavian from
the Triassic of Spain. Geobios 17,  747-753.
(Here it is considered a juvenile individual very similar to Macrocnemus).

Milner A. R. 1985. Cosesaurus - The last proavian?. Nature 315:544.
(a short note supporting Sanz and Lopez Martinez identification as a

Cosesaurus is alsoincluded in phylogenetic analyses or simply cited in the
systematic discussion in the following papers:

Olsen, P. E 1979. A new aquatic eosuchian from the Newark Supergroup (Late
Triassic-Early Jurassic) of North Carolina and Virginia. Postilla 176, 
(as sister group of the tanystropheids (= Tanytrachelos + Tanystropheus)

Renesto 1994: a new Prolacertiform reptile from the Late Triassic of
Northern Italy. Rivista Italiana di Paleontologia 100: 285-306.
(possible sister group of Langobardisaurus plus the tanystropheids)

Jalil N. E. 1997 A new prolacertiform diapsid from the Triassic of North
Africa and the interrelationships of the prolacertiformes JVP 17(3) 

(again, the sister group of Tanytrachelos + Tanystropheus)

Finally, you may find good drawings and some notes  on Cosesaurus (also 
on phylogeny) on David Peters website on pterosaurs (I have not the URL 
at hand, sorry).


David Peters website can be found at: 




David M Unwin
Curator for Fossil Reptiles and Birds
Institut fur Palaontologie
Zentralinstitut der Humboldt-Universitat zu Berlin
Invalidenstrasse 43
D-10115 Berlin

Email: david.unwin@rz.hu-berlin.de

Tel. numbers:   

0049 30 2093 8577 (office)
0049 30 2093 8862 (department secretary)
0049 30 2093 8868 (fax)