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[dinosaur] Platypterygius campylodon (Ichthyosauria) taxonomy and diversity of last ichthyosaurs (free pdf)





Ben Creisler
bcreisler@gmail.com

A new paper:

Valentin Fischer​ (2016) 
Taxonomy of Platypterygius campylodon and the diversity of the last ichthyosaurs. 
PeerJ 4:e2604
doi:  https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.2604
https://peerj.com/articles/2604/



A complex and confusing taxonomy has concealed the diversity dynamics of Cretaceous ichthyosaurs (Reptilia) for decades. The near totality of Albian-Cenomanian remains from Eurasia has been assigned, by default, to the loosely defined entity Platypterygius campylodon, whose holotype was supposed to be lost. By thoroughly examining the Cenomanian ichthyosaur collections from the UK, I redescribe the syntypic series of Platypterygius campylodon. This material, along with a handful of other coeval remains, is diagnostic and seemingly differs from the vast majority of Cretaceous remains previously assigned to this taxon. A lectotype for Platypterygius campylodon is designated and I reassign this species to Pervushovisaurus campylodon nov. comb. The feeding ecology of this species is assessed and conforms to the scenario of an early Cenomanian diversity drop prior to the latest Cenomanian final extinction.