Project 3656: A. C. Pritchard, H. Sues, D. Scott, R. R. Reisz. 2021. Osteology, relationships and functional morphology of Weigeltisaurus jaekeli (Diapsida, Weigeltisauridae) based on a complete skeleton from the Upper Permian Kupferschiefer of Germany. PeerJ. 9:e11413.
Specimen: † Weigeltisaurus jaekeli (SMNK 2882/SMNK:2882)
View: Slab specimen

Abstract

Background. Weigeltisauridae is a clade of small-bodied diapsids characterized by a horned cranial frill, slender trunk and limbs, and a patagium supported by elongated bony rods. Partial skeletons and fragments are definitively known only from upper Permian (Lopingian) rocks in England, Germany, Madagascar, and Russia. Despite these discoveries, there have been few detailed descriptions of weigeltisaurid skeletons, and the homologies of many skeletal elements—especially the rods supporting the patagium—remain the subject of controversy.

Materials & Methods. Here, we provide a detailed description of a nearly complete skeleton of Weigeltisaurus jaekeli from the upper Permian (Lopingian: ?Wuchiapingian) Kupferschiefer of Lower Saxony, Germany. Briefly addressed by past authors, the skeleton preserves a nearly complete skull, postcranial axial skeleton, appendicular skeleton, and patagial supports. Through comparisons with extant and fossil diapsids, we examine the hypotheses for the homologies of the patagial rods. To examine the phylogenetic position of Weigeltisauridae and characterize the morphology of the clade, we integrate the material and other weigeltisaurids into a parsimony-based phylogenetic analysis focused on Permo-Triassic non-saurian Diapsida and early Sauria (61 taxa, 339 characters).

Results. We recognize a number of intriguing anatomical features in the weigeltisaurid skeleton described here, including hollow horns on the post-temporal arch, lanceolate teeth in the posterior portion of the maxilla, the absence of a bony arch connecting the postorbital and squamosal bones, elongate and slender phalanges that resemble those of extant arboreal squamates, and patagial rods that are positioned superficial to the lateral one third of the gastral basket. Our phylogenetic study recovers a monophyletic Weigeltisauridae including Coelurosauravus elivensis, Weigeltisaurus jaekeli, and Rautiania spp. The clade is recovered as the sister taxon to Drepanosauromorpha outside of Sauria (=Lepidosauria + Archosauria).

Conclusions. Our anatomical observations and phylogenetic analysis show variety of plesiomorphic diapsid characters and apomorphies of Weigeltisauridae in the specimen described here. We corroborate the hypothesis that the patagial ossifications are dermal bones unrelated to the axial skeleton. The gliding apparatus of weigeltisaurids was constructed from dermal elements unknown in other known gliding diapsids. SMNK 2882 and other weigeltisaurid specimens highlight the high morphological disparity of Paleozoic diapsids already prior to their radiation in the early Mesozoic.



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Article DOI: 10.7717/peerj.11413

Project DOI: 10.7934/P3656, http://dx.doi.org/10.7934/P3656
This project containsMatrices
  • 2 Media
  • 1 Matrix
  • 61 Taxa
  • 3 Specimens
  • 339 Characters
Total size of project's media files: 17.04M

Download Project SDD File
Total scored cells: 13076
Total media associated with cells: 0
Total labels associated with cell media: 0
Characters
Total characters: 339
Total characters with associated media: 0
Total characters with media with labels: 0
Total character states: 725
Total character states with associated media: 0
Total character states with media with labels:0
Total unordered/ordered characters:313/26
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MorphoBank Project 3656

    Authors' Institutions

    • National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution

    • Virginia Museum of Natural History, Martinsville

    • Jilin University

    • University of Toronto



    Members

    member name taxa specimens media chars character
    media
    labels
    cell scorings
    (scored, NPA, "-")
    cell
    medialabels
    rules
    Adam Pritchard
    Project Administrator
    61323390013076
    (12522, 0, 554)
    000


    Taxonomic Overview for Matrix 'M26502' (61 Taxa)

    taxon unscored
    cells
    scored
    cells
    no cell
    support
    NPA
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    "-" cellscell images labels on
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    [1] † Petrolacosaurus kansensis
    Last Modified in 11/19/20
    2629329102200none
    [2] † Orovenator mayorum
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    2271091080400none
    [3] † Hypuronector limnaios
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    26273730400none
    [4] † Vallesaurus cenensis
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    2081241240700none
    [5] † Megalancosaurus preonensis
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1881481480300none
    [6] † Drepanosaurus unguicaudatus
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    23995950500none
    [7] † Dolabrosaurus aquatilis
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    29244440300none
    [8] † Avicranium renestoi
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    228989801300none
    [9] † Coelurosauravus elivensis
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    16416516501000none
    [10] † Weigeltisaurus jaekeli
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1861481480500none
    [11] † Rautiania spp.
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    24685850800none
    [12] † Claudiosaurus germaini
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    772572550700none
    [13] † Acerosodontosaurus piveteaui
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    2231101100600none
    [14] † Hovasaurus boulei
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1282082060500none
    [15] † Thadeosaurus colcanapi
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1831491490700none
    [16] † TropidostomaZone_Youngina
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1342022020300none
    [17] † Youngina capensis
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    3828728701400none
    [18] † Huehuecuetzpalli mixtecus
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1501871870200none
    [19] Shinisaurus crocodilurus
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1929829702300none
    [20] Iguana iguana
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1631131101200none
    [21] Uromastyx acanthinura
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    2729629601600none
    [22] † Gephyrosaurus bridensis
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    8024224201700none
    [23] † Diphydontosaurus avonis
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1142282230200none
    [24] † Planocephalosaurus robinsonae
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1092312280200none
    [25] † Sphenotitan leyesi
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    25678770600none
    [26] † Clevosaurus brasiliensis
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    2101291270200none
    [27] † Clevosaurus hudsoni
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    2230229901800none
    [28] Sphenodon punctatum
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1230930702000none
    [29] † Colobops noviportensis
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    28753510100none
    [30] † Protorosaurus speneri
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    7325525501100none
    [31] † Macrocnemus bassanii
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    882442430800none
    [32] † Macrocnemus fuyuanensis
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1142192180700none
    [33] † Amotosaurus rotfeldensis
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1591771760400none
    [34] † Tanystropheus longobardicus
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    2830630101000none
    [35] † Ozimek volans
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1871521520000none
    [36] Langobardisaurus pandoflii concatenation
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1561801800300none
    [37] † Tanytrachelos ahynis
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1401941940500none
    [38] † Mesosuchus browni
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    2730230001200none
    [39] † Howesia browni
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    2121231220500none
    [40] † Eohyosaurus wolvaardti
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    27169680000none
    [41] † Rhynchosaurus articeps
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    6425725601900none
    [42] † Teyumbaita sulcognathus
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    12120020001800none
    [43] † Hyperodapedon gordoni
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    9023123001900none
    [44] † Boreopricea funerea
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1242082080700none
    [45] † Teraterpeton hrynewichorum full codings
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1322062040300none
    [46] † Trilophosaurus buettneri
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1330730602000none
    [47] † Spinosuchus caseanus (combined)
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1451961930100none
    [48] † Icarosaurus siefkeri
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1631731730300none
    [49] † Kuehneosaurus latus
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    592812750500none
    [50] † Pamelaria dolichotrachela
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    832522480800none
    [51] † Shringasaurus indicus
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1411971950300none
    [52] † Azendohsaurus madagaskarensis
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1531231201200none
    [53] † Azendohsaurus laaroussi
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    29640400300none
    [54] † Prolacerta broomi
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    1931531001000none
    [55] † Proterosuchus fergusi
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    402952920700none
    [56] † Proterosuchus yuani
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    912412410700none
    [57] † Erythrosuchus africanus
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    522792790800none
    [58] † Euparkeria capensis
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    652662650900none
    [59] † Batrachotomus kupferzellensis
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    5027427201600none
    [60] † Coelophysis bauri
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    5925224803200none
    [61] † Plateosaurus engelhardti
    Last Modified in 06/03/18
    4926025803200none


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    Project overview187
    Matrix views198Archosauromorph phylogeny (21 views); Matrix landing page (177 views);
    Taxon list1401
    Views for media list298
    Media views493Media search (361 views); M686897 (68 views); M687026 (64 views);
    Specimen list427
    Bibliography86




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    Total downloads from project40
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    Matrix downloads7Archosauromorph phylogeny (7 downloads);