Eogyrinus

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Eogyrinus
Temporal range: Moscovian 311.7–306.5Ma
Eogyrinus BW.jpg
Eogyrinus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Superclass: Tetrapoda
Class: Amphibia sensu lato
Superorder: Reptiliomorpha
Order: Anthracosauria
Suborder: Embolomeri
Family: Eogyrinidae
Watson, 1929
Genus: Eogyrinus
Watson, 1926

Eogyrinus attheyi (from Greek eos meaning dawn and gyrinos meaning Tadpole) was one of the largest Carboniferous tetrapods, and perhaps one of the largest of its family, Eogyrinidae, at 4.6 metres (15 ft) in length.[1]

Eogyrinus appears to have been a powerful swimmer that moved quickly through the water by swishing its long tail from side to side. It may have been a predator, lying in wait for prey in much the same way as a modern crocodile. Its lightly built 560 kilograms (1,230 lb) body might have allowed it to do a death-roll, like a crocodile[clarification needed]. Although probably better at hunting in the water, Eogyrinus could probably have also made a grab for prey passing close by on land.

Fossils of Eogyrinus are known from northern England.[1]

Recent studies by Jennifer A. Clack suggest that the amphibian Pholiderpeton described by Thomas Henry Huxley in 1869 is the same animal as Eogyrinus. If this is so, then Pholiderpeton's name takes priority.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Palmer, D., ed. (1999). The Marshall Illustrated Encyclopedia of Dinosaurs and Prehistoric Animals. London: Marshall Editions. p. 53. ISBN 1-84028-152-9.